Let's keep our fingers crossed that `That Girl' becomes `That Woman'

CELEBRITY NEWS

September 24, 2007|By LIZ SMITH | LIZ SMITH,Tribune Media Services

Marlo Thomas stopped in at L.A.'s trendy Frida Mexican and immediately caught the eye of one of this column's handy helpers. Our guy complimented the new sparkling DVD release of Marlo's iconic That Girl sitcom. Mrs. Phil Donahue - of whom he said, "doesn't she ever age?" - was gracious and forthcoming: "I am thrilled about the shows being out. I did an audio commentary. And I have to credit the whole team - the cast and writers - for making the series so successful. Ann Marie was the first single girl on TV to have her own pad and a boyfriend. She was television's first truly liberated female." (Remember her mod wardrobe - sexy Courreges boots and barely there Mary Quant miniskirts?)

Marlo also offered some news: "I would love to update Ann Marie's life in a That Girl movie. I met with ABC about a year ago, and they liked the idea; that she would be living in New York with her granddaughter, an aspiring actress. Ann Marie would have her own successful PR firm. I still have my fingers crossed."

It would take an entire column to list Thomas' credits and accomplishments since That Girl went off the air in 1971. As an actress, activist and humanitarian she is nonpareil. (She raises millions for the St. Jude Children's Research Hospital in Memphis.) But this child of showbiz - her father was the popular Danny Thomas - is smart enough to know that her first fame is her most enduring and marketable commodity. Are any of today's TV execs as smart?

Let's hope we see Marlo in That Woman soon.

Saying goodbye

The posh ones who crowded Mr. Chow to memorialize writer Nancy Holmes came in a rush after to Quest magazine's 25th anniversary at Doubles in the Sherry-Netherland Hotel.

Everybody arrived pronouncing Nancy's goodbye "perfect!" Men's fashion maven Patrick Abarta said, "It was like a scene out of Auntie Mame.'"

Best-selling author Barbara Taylor Bradford, longtime pal Randy Jones, and Nancy's son and grandson spoke. Tiffany's John Loring bade his friend so long with a brief powerful remembrance. He also told this about the Texas dynamo. "She loved a crazy, Paris extreme fashion coat of my mother's. When my mother died in 1990, Nancy said: `Boy, are we going to miss her! But I get that coat!'"

Views on `The View'

The Barbara Walters-Bill Geddie weekly live call-in Sirius radio show is turning out to be even more fun than what they do mornings on ABC. Here, the star and her producer dish what has happened backstage and on air at The View.

They discuss their new cast member Sherri Shepherd, who doesn't know whether the earth is round or flat. (Unbelievable!) They comment on Rosie, Joy, Star, The Donald, and Meredith, and they deplore the popular Barry Manilow's recent View refusal. Geddie says, "I've never heard Jane Fonda (or Susan Sarandon) say, `I won't sit with Elisabeth Hasselbeck.'"

Tune in, this is where the real dish is being served.

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