updated 06/09/1986 AT 01:00 AM EDT
•originally published 06/09/1986 AT 01:00 AM EDT
An unlikely defender of Johnny Carson in his brouhaha with Joan Rivers is Johnny's second wife (1963-1972), Joanne Carson. She says Joan knew Johnny better than she is letting on (PEOPLE, May 26). "The weekend Johnny and I separated, we had planned to go away with Edgar and Joan," says Joanne. "When I told Joan about the separation, I said I hoped it wouldn't hurt our friendship. She told me that her career came first and that it was important for her to stick close to Johnny. She dropped me." Adds Joanne: "We saw Joan and Edgar all the time. When Melissa was born, Johnny sent her monogrammed diapers with sterling silver pins. Joan was there for Johnny's intimate birthday parties. We were very close. Joan has a very convenient memory."
Prince's latest protégée is Ohio-born singer Jill Jones, who had a brief part in Purple Rain. Prince is helping her cut a debut album, which he'll finish as soon as his feature, Under the Cherry Moon, wraps. A member of the Prince entourage sizes Jill up this way: "She's more musically talented than Vanity or Apollonia.... But she doesn't wear as much lingerie as they do." Few do.
Marlon Brando's son Christian Devi Brando, 28, and his wife, actress Mary McKenna Brando, 27, have served each other with divorce papers. Mary claims she split with her hubby, a welding teacher/ actor, because of his infidelities. "It's just too embarrassing," says Mrs. Brando, who attempted unsuccessfully to salvage the union: "Try to tell a Brando to go to a marriage counselor, and he'll laugh in your face."
Tom Cruise has denied romances with Kelly McGillis, Lori (Footloose) Singer and Cher. But while chatting with a reporter, he referred to his "girlfriend, Mimi." Mimi turns out to be Mimi (Paper Dolls) Rogers, whose dates have included Tom Selleck, Ed (Hill St. Blues) Marinaro and Kennedy kin Bobby Shriver.
Stacy Keach and Polish actress Malgosia Tomassi will marry June 22 in L.A., then head to Hawaii for honeymoon games. They met when she appeared on a Mike Hammer episode....
Changing shrinks: Heather (Fall Guy) Thomas is divorcing psychotherapist Allan Rosenthal after nine months....
It's another girl—Arrin Shea, as in Stadium—for golf superstar Nancy Lopez and Ray Knight of the New York Mets.
Everybody was expecting ego fireworks when Oscar winners Diane Keaton, Jessica Lange and Sissy Spacek arrived last month in Southport, N.C. (pop. 3,500) to shoot Beth Henley's Crimes of the Heart. As it turns out, the ladies (Sissy brought daughter Schuyler, Jessica came with Sam Shepard and her tots, Alexandra and Hannah) behaved wonderfully; it was the townspeople who did the beefing. It seems that the local grocery store—which happens to be a major hangout—had to be closed for two days of shooting, forcing residents to wait 48 hours for their hot gossip fixes.