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Entertainment news for June 19, 1992

Oliver Stone, Rodney King, and Quincy Jones made headlines this week

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OLIVER TWIST:
While plugging his book, Under Fire, Col. Oliver North recently accused Oliver Stone of trying to snag the rights to his story through a third party. But it seems North misunderstood. According to a Stone spokeswoman, an independent producer tried to option the book and then passed the idea to Stone, who nixed it. The director, now preparing for his next film, Heaven and Earth, says the would-be North movie is ”a great idea — with Leslie Nielsen.”

ORIENT EXCESS:
Richard Gere and Denzel Washington may journey to the Far East this summer to shoot Hong Kong, a drama about a hit man (Gere) who blinds a Chinese woman only to fall in love with her. Washington’s role: a cop on the case. ”It’s sort of a remake of The Killer,” says writer David Giler, referring to the critically acclaimed 1989 John Woo chopsocky. Giler is cowriting the script with Alien3 partner Walter Hill, who will direct.

BRUSHES WITH GREATNESS:
Quincy Jones and Nastassia Kinski may yet prove that the couple that networks together stays together. Within a couple of days in Manhattan, the pair was spotted at the Russian Tea Room with Mike Nichols, Mia Farrow, Nick Ashford, and Valerie Simpson, and at Jour et Nuit, a new night spot, with Kevin Costner, Clint Eastwood, and ice cream heir Richard Baskin, with whom Costner and Jones may be talking about producing a Broadway musical.

RED-HOT TAPE:
The amateur cameraman who videotaped the beating of Rodney King last year is now demanding his day in court. George Holliday is suing ABC, NBC, CBS, CNN, and local station KTLA-Los Angeles for using the tape without permission. He claims he only gave KTLA permission to air his video on the March 5, 1991, news. Holliday, who was paid $500 for the tape by KTLA, is seeking $100 million in damages. ”The station took away Mr. Holliday’s ability to make a profit,” says his lawyer, James Jordan. KTLA had no comment.

PRESIDENTIAL PITCH:
Why the recent closed door meeting between Ronald Reagan, his ex-deputy chief of staff, Michael Deaver, and HBO executives in Reagan’s Century City office? Turns out Deaver was shopping a treatment about Reagan’s former campaign manager, Lee Atwater, who died of a brain tumor last year. The pol-turned-producer acquired rights to the story from Atwater’s family. HBO is still thinking about the project. No casting yet, but Deaver says Reagan probably won’t play himself: ”I think his acting days are over.”

Jeffrey Wells, Stephen Schaefer, Sharon Isaak, Giselle Benatar