Names in the News
LOS ANGELES (AP) _ Stars of the new ″Gidget″ and the old ″Star Trek″ television series joined nearly 1,000 people for a weekend walk-a-thon to raise money for the homeless.
Mayor Tom Bradley greeted actress Caryn Richman, the new ″Gidget,″ and Walter Koenig and Nichelle Nichols, who portrayed Chekov and Lt. Uhuru in the original ″Star Trek″ series and movies, as the walk began Saturday.
The San Fernando Valley Mayor’s Fund, a volunteer group, will distribute money brought in by the 6.6-mile event. Figures were not available Sunday, but organizers had estimated it would raise $24,000.
″People are beginning to realize that we are not talking about homeless on Skid Row, we are talking about families and neighbors,″ said actress Marsha Hunt, a founder of the fund.
LOS ANGELES (AP) - Singer-actress Rita Moreno, who has won every major award from the Grammy to the Oscar, was installed as honorary mayor of Pacific Palisades, an affluent neighborhood overlooking Santa Monica Bay.
″You may ask how a simple girl like me became honorary mayor of Pacific Palisades?″ she told the installation audience Sunday. ″As a matter of fact, I was running for honorary governor of all of California until I handed the final negotiations over to the William Morris Agency, my agents. ... Well, I’ll have to settle for being honorary mayor.″
Miss Moreno, 56, who starred in the movie ″West Side Story,″ made it clear she will be more than just a ceremonial official.
″I certainly plan to break all precedent and get involved,″ she said. ″When I told one of the Chamber (of Commerce) directors that I intend to attend meetings, she almost dropped the phone.″
She plans to push a pilot recycling program, and drew cheers with a pointed remark about planned oil drilling along the coast.
″I’m rather conservationist,″ she said. ″I turned off the pilot light in the gas range years ago. I don’t use the electric dryer. I use a clothesline.″ She also refuses double bags at the grocery store and grows her own tomatoes and herbs.
Her two-year tenure follows that of comedian Chevy Chase, who attended the installation along with such celebrities as Debbie Reynolds and Dick Van Patten.
LOS ANGELES (AP) - Comedian Lucille Ball was released from Cedars-Sinai Medical Center after nearly a week’s stay, a spokesman said.
″She’s doing fine,″ said hospital spokesman Ron Wise, after the 76-year- old Miss Ball was released Sunday afternoon.
Miss Ball was brought in Wednesday by her husband, Gary Morton, after complaining that she did not feel well, Wise said.
″There was initial concern that she was having cardiac problems, but subsequent tests indicated that her general condition was good,″ Wise said.
He did not know if doctors had determined the problem, but ″if it was anything significant, she wouldn’t have been out this fast,″ Wise said.
The comedian usually has a yearly checkup at the medical center, and last year underwent surgery there to remove a cyst from her thyroid gland, Wise said.
PITTSBURGH (AP) - Blair Underwood, who portrays that hunk of an attorney Jonathan Rollins on NBC-TV’s ″L.A. Law,″ received his bachelor of fine arts degree at Carnegie Mellon University, 3 1/2 years after dropping out to seek his fortune.
The 23-year-old Underwood, who received his degree Sunday, said he was determined to get it one way or another, even though it was irrelevant in terms of his acting career.
″In the industry, you walk into an audition and they don’t say, ‘Do you have your college degree?’ They just want to know if you look the part, can you play the part. That’s it,″ he said.
″But for me, I just wanted to finish. I hate starting something and leaving it hang.″
Underwood left Carnegie Mellon’s drama department midway through his junior year and headed for New York.
Last season after various television roles and commercials, Underwood joined ″L.A. Law,″ produced by another Carnegie Mellon alumnus, Steven Bochco. The show’s creators were looking for a young black actor to portray an entertainment attorney.
Carnegie Mellon officials allowed Underwood to use his acting experience toward a student internship. His final research paper for graduation was entitled ″The Business of Show.″
CANNES, France (AP) - Robert Redford presented his film ″The Milagro Beanfield War″ at the Cannes Film Festival even though it wasn’t entered in the festival’s competition.
The movie, directed by Redford, is about the inhabitants of Milagro, a small town in New Mexico, and a resident who diverts water from a real estate development to irrigate a patch of his land.
Although the movie is not entered in the competition, Redford said he brought it to Cannes ″because the film is very important for me and I was in the neighborhood.″
″The rampant development that’s going on in the U.S. should be questioned,″ he said Sunday. ″But there is also the need to preserve a 400- year-old culture.″