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MORNING REPORT

Arts and entertainment reports from The Times, national and international news services and the nation's press.

September 08, 1998|SHAUNA SNOW

PEOPLE

A Lotta Yada Yada: Comedians Jerry Seinfeld and Larry David, who hatched the idea for the sitcom "Seinfeld," and "Titanic" director James Cameron were among the highest-paid entertainers this year, according to Forbes magazine. Seinfeld topped the Forbes Top 40, earning $225 million this year. He and friend David, who ranks at No. 2 with $200 million, came up with the idea for the sitcom in a Korean deli. After a nine-year run, the show was sold into syndication for $1.7 billion, the magazine said. Director Steven Speilberg, who ranked at the top last year, came in third, grossing $175 million. Talk-show queen Oprah Winfrey dropped a spot to fourth. Both entertainers have ranked No. 1 in recent years, Forbes said. Director Cameron, who grossed $115 million, came in at No. 5. Tim Allen, star of the television show "Home Improvement," ranked sixth. Author Michael Crichton slipped to No. 7 from No. 4 last year. Actor Harrison Ford, the Rolling Stones and rapper Master P rounded out the top 10. Forbes said it interviewed attorneys, managers, agents and executives, and used published sources such as ACNielsen EDI, Pollstar and the media companies themselves to compile the list.

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Babs to Tour?: Barbra Streisand is talking with director Mike Nichols about staging her "final" world concert tour, according to the New York Post. Nichols, whose directing career has ranged from "The Graduate" to "Primary Colors," plans to piece together a movie of the tour if the deal goes through, the Post reported Monday. "They are definitely talking. Barbra would love Mike to direct her last concert tour," the newspaper quoted a source as saying. Streisand's handlers said the singer is "considering several possibilities" to perform again. "Many attractive offers from around the world have been received, and the possibility of touring again is being contemplated," said Marty Erlichman, Streisand's longtime manager.

MOVIES & VIDEO

Haitians Not Grooving: Haitian government officials are criticizing "How Stella Got Her Groove Back," saying that a line in the American movie linking their country with the AIDS crisis is an unwarranted slur. In the 20th Century Fox film, in which Angela Bassett's 40-year-old character falls for a 20-year-old Jamaican man, Bassett's character is asked by her sister if she fears getting AIDS in Jamaica. But another sister interrupts, saying, "No, that's Haiti, Miss Manners." "The people at Fox forget that the virus came from the United States. We deplore that this company would say such a thing," said Dr. Michaele Amedee-Gedeon, general director of Haiti's Ministry of Health. "We accuse them of ignorance and judgment without proof." Officials at Haiti's Ministry of Tourism have also spoken out against the movie. And Haitian American groups in New York and elsewhere have staged protests against the movie, saying it revives an old, unfair stereotype. A 20th Century Fox spokeswoman said the studio had no comment on or response to the Haitian protests.

TELEVISION

Following the Legacy: Martin Luther King Jr.'s daughter has joined the cast of an ABC movie about the 1960s civil rights struggle. Yolanda King, 42, will appear in the "Wonderful World of Disney" installment "Selma, Lord, Selma," based on two girls' experiences during the 1965 Selma, Ala., voting rights march led by King. Filming begins in Georgia and Alabama this month, with the broadcast planned for January.

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Tube Notes: CBS will preview its fall season in a half-hour special airing Friday at 1:05 a.m. Included will be excerpts from the network's seven new series, plus overviews of returning shows. . . . "Dharma & Greg" star Thomas Gibson will host "Neighbors From Hell," an hour-long reality special based on the hit British series of the same name, on Sept. 26 at 8 p.m. . . . The syndicated series "Air America" will premiere Oct. 4 in the Sunday 7 p.m. time slot on KCAL-TV Channel 9. Starring Lorenzo Lamas as an undercover CIA agent running a commercial airline, the show is described as "Indiana Jones with an airplane." It is not affiliated with the Mel Gibson movie of the same name.

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