LAWSUITS Garry Shandling’s life is beginning to imitate The Larry Sanders Show. The comedian is being sued for sexual discrimination and harassment by ex-fiancee (and former Sanders regular) Linda Doucett, 36. She alleges that her relationship with Shandling, 45, was a ”quid pro quo of her continued employment” and that she was fired from her role as Hank’s ditsy aide, Darlene, only two weeks after Shandling terminated their relationship of seven years. ”We are saddened by the false and outrageous charges,” says a spokesman for Shandling.
FIGHTS Talk-show hostess Leeza Gibbons, 38, has Paramount Television peeved over her appearance in the latest infomercial by Tony Robbins. The company, claiming her freelance work for the controversial motivational guru violates her contract, had sought an injunction to keep the infomercial off the air. On Dec. 29, an L.A. Superior Court judge ruled the infomercial can air but also said Gibbons may have breached her contract. The two sides face off again in court April 1.
BIRTHS It’s a 7-pound 10-ounce boy story for Tom Hanks, 39, and his wife, Rita Wilson, 41. Wilson gave birth to their second son, Truman Theodore, Dec. 26 in Los Angeles.
RECOVERING ABC eminence grise David Brinkley, 75, from surgery to remove a benign growth from his lung Dec. 27 in Washington, D.C. He’s expected to return to This Week With David Brinkley this month.
DEATHS Charlie Chaplin’s second wife, Lita Grey Chaplin, 88, Dec. 29 in Woodland Hills, Calif. Chaplin cast her in The Kid when she was 12 and wed her when she was 16. In 1927, after three years of marriage, Grey received the largest divorce settlement in American history at that time — $825,000…. Crooner Dean Martin, 78, of acute respiratory failure, Dec. 25 in L.A. (See page 12.)… Thelma ”Butterfly” McQueen, 84, from critical burns after a kerosene heater caught fire Dec. 22 at her home near Augusta, Ga. McQueen played the squeaky-voiced Prissy in Gone With the Wind.. Madge Sinclair, 57, of leukemia, Dec. 20 in L.A. One of the stars of Roots, Sinclair won an Emmy for her work as James Earl Jones’ love interest in Gabriel’s Fire…. Writer-director Joseph Vasquez, 33, from an AIDS-related illness Dec. 16 in Chula Vista, Calif. Vasquez’s Hangin’ With the Homeboys won the 1991 Sundance Film Festival screenwriting award.