BARBARA WICKENS December 19 1994


BARBARA WICKENS December 19 1994



Among the major attractions on Washington's crowded calendar are National Press Club luncheons that feature celebrity speakers from many fields, mostly pol-

itics. But last week, sandwiched between U.S. Treasury Secretary Lloyd Bentsen and American playwright Neil Simon, was one of the club’s all-time biggest draws: Britain’s Duchess of York, better known as Sarah (Fergie) Ferguson. At the podium for an hour—half speech and half answering audience questions written on cards—Fergie conquered the capacity crowd with her candor. The flamehaired duchess, who separated from Prince Andrew in 1992, made it clear that she is not a lady of leisure but a single mother of two daughters, living in a rented house. And she denied reports that she was getting rich from her Budgie the Helicopter books, of which a percentage goes to charity, saying: ‘You’d think that I’d buy my own home now, don’t you?” When asked about her mother-in-law, Queen Elizabeth n, Fergie replied: “Her Majesty is quite extraordiin her of me.” Emotional that is.


In movie-acting 1966, Alan debut Arkin with made Canahis dian director Norman Jewi-1 son in the Hollywood satire The

Russians Are Coming! The Russians Are Coming! Now, almost 30 years

later, the two have teamed up

again—on Jewison’s home turf. Earlier this month, filming completed near Toronto of Soir Bleu, a 30-minute TV film for the U.S. network Showtime. In Soir Bleu, Arkin stars as a clown caught up in a deadly romantic triangle. “I have to laugh, I have to cry and I have to kill people,” says the Westchester, N.Y.-based actor. “What more could a guy ask?” Reuniting with Jewison, he adds, has been “wonderful.” Still, one trip down memory lane seems unlikely to happen for 60-year-old Arkin: a film version of Closing Time, the best-selling sequel to Joseph Heller’s Second World War novel Catch-22. “I haven’t heard anything about it,” says Arkin, who starred as Yossarian in the 1970 movie version of the book. “But I’m sure if they do it,” he adds with nary a hint of sarcasm, “they’ll give the part to Tom Cruise.”




The group pop-metal Bon Jovi, which recently took a four-year hiatus, is now busier than ever. The New Jersey-based band is currently promoting its greatest hits al

bum, Crossroads, and sifting through material for its sixth studio effort, tentatively titled Open All Night. Last week, the group was in Montreal, the only Canadian stop on five-city fund-raising tour for charity, including Homeless Youth Shelter and Missing Children’s Network Canada. The group’s members are active on the personal front as well. Guitarist Richie Sambora is engaged to marry actress Heather Locklear, the resident schemer of the hit TV show Melrose Place. Jon Bon Jovi did a recent remake of the classic Please Come Home for Christmas for the album A Very Special Christmas //. In the video for that song, Jon’s love interest is supermodel Cindy Crawford. Crawford recently separated from her husband of three years, actor Richard Gere. According to sources, Gere thought the love scenes were a little too hot. But Jon takes it all in stride: “The press are gonna make something big out of nothing, and as usual, I can’t stop any of that”


Like mony, any last awards week’s cereGenies in Toronto had both its winners and losers. But without question, the ; first-place prize for unbridled enthusiasm and party spirit at the annual event, which hon*Æ ors Canada’s movie industry, Jr went to actress Sandra Oh. Taking the Genie Award as best actress for her performance in Double Happiness, the 23-yearold from Nepean, Ont., was seen positively bubbling over with excitement and delight. In the film, Oh plays the role of a first-generation Chinese-Canadian actress who struggling to come to terms with her traditional family—a multicultural theme that is hardly the stuff most mainstream movies. “It’s about time that things get a bit more reflective,” Oh said, “and it’s time we hear different stories.” At gala banquet, which took place after the Genie ceremonies, she di-

vided her time between rearranging the golden statue on her table and hitting the dance floor—most obviously to the Rolling Stones’ classic, (I Can’t Get No) Satisfaction. With a Genie in one hand and a plane ticket to vacation destination Jamaica for the following morning in the other, Oh should be more than satisfied at the moment.