People

People

Marsha Boulton October 15 1979
People

People

Marsha Boulton October 15 1979

People

Though the figures are clouded by vague “classified” bureaucracy, sources close to the U.S. Secret Service revealed last week that it has cost the American taxpayer $1.2 million to protect former-president-turned-bon-vi-vant Gerald Ford over the past 12 months. “It’s the travelling,” says the source. “He’s in a different city every day. And it’s not just his bodyguards who go along. A military bomb squad and all kinds of other people are kept in transit.” Other former presidents have been inclined to sit back and let the world come to them, but Ford accepts all kinds of invitations and seems to crave the limelight while playing coy about the possibility of another run at the presidency. Ford’s $120,000-amonth is hardly a drop in the Secret Service bucket, since its budget for 1980 has been set at $157 million. About $17 million will be spent on protecting presidential candidates and it is estimated that Senator Edward Kennedy’s security blanket will absorb $3 million.

í i tor three years, I sat in a bathtub ■ and said either, ‘And it floats,’ or ‘Get some today,”’ recalls Patti D’Arbanville, who began her career as an Ivory soap commercial baby. Now 28 and a long way from her sudsy start, she’s being touted for an Academy Award for her supporting role as Ryan O’Neal’s floozy girl-friend in The Main Event. In Montreal, D’Arbanville is starring in Hog Wild (a motorcycled Animal House) as one of the “good guys.” She lied about her ability to handle a “hog” in order to get the part and, after suffering several spills on sandy, rutted roads, the lynx-eyed actress admits she’s getting her “just desserts.”

For her role in CTV’s kidult series Whatever Turns You On, rubberfaced Ruth Buzzi put down her man-hitting purse from the ’60s days of Laugh-In and added a whole new series of authoritarian zanies including drama teacher Miss Fortune and secretary Miss Take. Besides developing comic characters, the affable Buzzi has also taken time out for funny-lady roles in films such as The Apple Dumpling Gang Rides Again and the coming Skate Town, U.S.A. Buzzi, 43, enjoys spending her off-camera hours singing country and western tunes with her second husband, Kent Perkins, 31, whom she met in true Laugh-In fashion on the set of Celebrity Bowling. In addition to the western warbling, Buzzi readily admits to other idiosyncracies. “I wear falsies from Frederick’s of Hollywood. Can’t you tell? Spongy, spongy.”

After former Liberal cabinet minister Paul Hellyer integrated the Armed Forces in 1967, navy computer analyst David Gurr decided it was time to get out. Gurr’s second career, as a builder, began during his navy days, starting with a sun deck and working up to whole houses. It was a natural calling, according to Gurr, who says: “If you’re in the navy you don’t get much money, so the only way you get a nice house is if you can do it for yourself.” When the housing market in Victoria, B.C., dipped, British-born Gurr began casting about for another career and came up with writing. The result is Troika, an intrigue-infested novel about international espionage, which has moved spy-churner Alistair MacLean

to describe the first-time novelist as “among the most outstanding new storytellers I have come across in years.” Gurr, 43, is now devoted to writing because of the financial rewards he has been reaping. Says he unabashedly: “Greed, I think, is always very important in these things.”

Last week Red Buttons, 60, took time out from the filming of the resthome comedy Off Your Rocker to celebrate Yom Kippur at Toronto’s Beth Sholom Synagogue, but he couldn’t avoid the spotlight. In the middle of the service Rabbi David Monson paused to introduce the red-headed comic. “Applause in a synagogue was unexpected,” says Buttons. Ever the performer, “I almost started doing one of my routines.”

As if things weren’t bad enough in Britain, yet another myth has fallen by the wayside with the revelation that Winston Churchill did not make the famous radio speech “we shall fight on the beaches.” Instead the “fighting words” text was mouthed by Norman Shelley, a veteran actor and broadcaster who also brought the voice of A.A. Milne’s Pooh Bear to life on British children’s radio 40 years ago. “It was my finest hour,” reminisces Shelley, 76, “but I was sworn to secrecy.” As the story now goes, Churchill made the original speech to the House of Commons on June 4,1940, but when the War

Office requested a repeat performance for radio propaganda the old bulldog growled: “Get an actor.”

This summer’s horror boom was to a large degree triggered by the fetishistic popularity of Frank Langella’s sensual neck-nipping in Dracula and George Hamilton’s fang-in-cheek vampire in Love at First Bite. Hamilton seems hooked on the night stalker and has recently been denied permission to visit Count Dracula’s Transylvanian homeland by the Romanian government, which does not agree with his characterization. But out of the horror of it all, expect Langella to return in an even more captivating incarnation as a 1950s song-and-dance man in a musical love story that bespeaks Bram Stokerish leanings only in its title— Those Lips, Those Eyes. The story revolves around the struggles of a vagabond operetta troop which spends a greasepainted summer hoofing in Cleveland, and Langella has been spending long hours before the tape recorder practising his mellow tones. According to producer Herb Jaffe, Langella is liable to be as lethal to women as he was the last time around. Not only that, he gets to wear a cape. “But this time it’s red.”

Holidaying on the Greek island of Hydra is a tradition for poet Leonard Cohen, 45. The self-confessed “rootless, cosmopolitan Jew” idled away the summer with his children Lorca, 5, and Adam, 7, though their mother Suzanne Elrod was nowhere to be seen. The children were reportedly cared for by a girl called Gina, while Cohen whiled away the hours with a Romanian named Mi-

chelle. Cohen recently recorded a new set of songs called Recent Songs in Los Angeles, and last week began a European tour. “I don’t make songs for lousy bucks,” said the suntanned minstrel before he left Hydra. “People should wash dishes to them. I don’t care. I just want to find out who I am.”

Comic Pat Paulsen is definitely running and not running in next year’s U.S. presidential race. Perhaps the greatest noncandidate since Senator Edward Kennedy, Paulsen told Maclean’s: “I have announced my candidacy in several cities and denied it in several others. In Canada, it’s okay to announce it in Toronto, but not in Montreal. I like to keep people ofï-balance and Canada has been off-balance for years.” In keeping with his previous campaigns in 1968 and 1972, the 49-year-old political satirist, who earned a wide following on The Smothers Brothers Comedy Hour, intends to run without a platform. And he won’t be investing megabucks in buttons and banners. “I’m not putting any money into getting a job like that.”

At 65, veteran film-maker Stanley Kramer considers his future projects with mortal caution. “It takes me two years to make a film, so if I look at the insurance charts I have to ask myself how many more I will be capable of making,” says the producer/director whose 35-picture career includes The Caine Mutiny, Guess Who’s Coming to Dinner and Oklahoma Crude. He has

never been one to avoid the issues and his latest film, The Runner Stumbles, finds Dick Van Dyke playing a priest who goes on trial for murdering the nun he loves. Kramer maintains that the film is not about religion but about his own questioning of values. “Everything I was once sure about, I’m not sure of anymore,” he says, citing covert CIA shenanigans as one cause for disillusionment. Kramer gets to vent his socially conscious spleen once a week in his local paper, The Seattle Times, for which he writes a column called It’s a Mad World. “I write about Anita Bryant, capital punishment, junk food in schools and nuclear plants,” he says with delight. “It stirs things up and I get lots of nasty mail.”

Defeated former-cabinet-minister-

for - everything - including - wheat Otto Lang has come to roost in Winnipeg, one province east of his former riding. In August, Lang became No. 2 man at Pioneer Grain, the largest private grain company in the country. Initially, the appointment was protested by NDP House leader Stanley Knowles because of a Liberal cabinet conflict-of-interest guideline. Lang, however, “sees no conflict whatever” and has put down roots by purchasing a $155,000 home on posh Kingsway Avenue. The mansion, complete with ballroom and indoor fountain, has been on the market for three months and was purchased from the University of Manitoba. With house and job secured Lang has just one familiar problem—Winnipeg has a nanny crisis.

Edited by Marsha Boulton