Plus Robin Quivers pens a book, and Spike Lee self-promotes

By EW Staff
Updated February 11, 1994 at 05:00 AM EST

DUETING IT AGAIN: Thanks to Duets, 1993 was a very good year for Frank Sinatra, which is why the Voice has returned to the studio to lay down tracks for another passel of pop standards, due this fall. According to a Sinatra insider, Very Old Blue Eyes (nearing 80) began work on Duets II in November. Potential partners are being lined up, with Willie Nelson, Stevie Wonder, Lyle Lovett, and Bette Midler among the names mentioned. ”It’s up to the old man and the powers that be,” says one Sinatra pal. Meanwhile, Frank-heads can look forward to Reprise’s Live in Paris, a lost recording of Sinatra performing with a jazz sextet in 1962. Joe McEwen, the exec who found the tape in the Warner Bros. vault, calls it ”remarkable” and insists that its release has nothing to do with the success of Duets: ”It’s a total coincidence, to be honest.” –Jeff Gordinier

OVERWORKED: Is Anthony Hopkins the new Michael Caine (appearing in more films per year than the MGM lion)? Hopkins currently has three movies in release (The Remains of the Day, Shadowlands, and The Trial) and already has two in the can for 1994. The Oscar winner will play cornflake king Dr. John Kellogg in Alan Parker‘s adaptation of T. Coraghessan Boyle‘s The Road to Wellville and Brad Pitt‘s father in Ed Zwick’s Legends of the Fall, a period drama. A spokesman for the actor says he will now take ”a couple months off.” And what will he do with his well-earned R&R? ”He’s looking over scripts.” –Rebecca Ascher-Walsh

WRITIN’ ROBIN: Private Parts Part Deux? Well, not exactly. Howard Stern‘s significant radio other, Robin Quivers, won’t be exposing quite as much as her best-selling boss, but she does have an autobiography on the way. ”It’s about how I became who I am, and the forces that molded me,” says Quivers. Simon & Schuster editor Judith Regan decided to do a book with Quivers last year after the two sat down for a chat. ”She’s a fascinating person, and she’s amazingly articulate and insightful about being a black woman in America,” says Regan. ”The book is a very personal, extraordinary story about one woman’s triumph in life. It won’t be anything like [Stern’s].” Is that good or bad? –Kate Meyers

A DIRTY JOB: No wonder Sean Penn would rather be behind the cameras. The actor-turned-director was recently spotted at Bailey’s Twenty 20, one of L.A.’s upscale strip joints. But according to a spokeswoman, the visit was ”strictly business.” Penn was researching a scene shot in a bar for his upcoming The Crossing Guard, starring Jack Nicholson. ”Sean was pretty mellow,” recalls one employee. ”He sat in the corner with one of his bodyguards, and a couple of girls danced privately for him.” Penn did not earn points for tipping (”Two girls just got the usual $20”), although he did hire one woman to appear in the movie. Says the employee: ”Sometimes good things do come out of stripping.” And directing. –Melina Gerosa

WEAR IT WELL: The time: 1 p.m. The place: a Japanese restaurant near New York City’s Times Square. The scene: Director Spike Lee is sitting at a table near the window, dressed in an ensemble that glaringly promotes his latest film, Crooklyn (due May 13). He’s wearing not just a Crooklyn cap but a Crooklyn jacket and a turtleneck with an S.J. patch (for Shelton Jackson, Lee’s real name). Why does he feel the need to look like a walking movie trailer? ”I gotta publicize my s — -,” says Lee. ”It’s between me and Madonna, but at least I don’t expose my narrow ass.” Does Lee ever leave home with out his promo gear? Apparently not. ”[He wears it] 100 percent of the time,” says his publicist, ”although he tends to go back to the X hat now and then.” –MG