Chatter

updated 07/14/1986 AT 01:00 AM EDT

originally published 07/14/1986 AT 01:00 AM EDT

NEXT EXERCISE—THE ELBOW BEND: If it was strange to see health-conscious Jane Fonda puffing on cigarettes (albeit herbal) in Agnes of God, it'll be even more odd to see her in her next movie as an aging, alcoholic movie actress in The Morning After, co-starring Jeff Bridges. "I'm at a point where I only do things I'm not sure I can do," says Fonda. "What a drag it would be if I only played people like me."

THE SWEET SMELL OF SUCCESS: Bright lights, fast cars and loud shirts are okay, but a guy needs to get away once in a while and go back home. Michael Talbott, who plays Detective Stanley Switek on Miami Vice, spent his summer vacation in Waverly, Iowa, where the only snorting done was by the animals on his mother's farm. "I didn't make a movie with a pretty girl, I didn't cut a record," he says. "I went back to Iowa and dug up a sewer."

IS THAT WHY THEY'RE CALLED SOAP OPERAS? Good help is always hard to find, so Wayne Northrop, who played chauffeur Michael Cullen during Dynasty's first year, is back on the show in the same role. During his previous run, his primary purpose was to have a steamy affair with Fallon, played by Pamela Sue Martin. A lot of their upstairs-downstairs get-togethers took place in the bubble bath, leaving Northrop no choice but to undress for success. "I had the smallest wardrobe of the cast," he says. "I had two hangers—one for the chauffeur's suit and one for my bath towel."

ALONG WITH IMELDA'S FEET: It's not that he can't afford it, but Frank Sinatra, chatting with his concert audience at Orange County's Pacific Amphitheatre, got on the subject of the shopping habits of his wife, Barbara. "She's got a black belt in shopping," he joked. "Sometimes when we go out, she's got so many baubles on her ears and neck, I put her whole head in the vault when we get back."

IT'S CALLED ARTISTIC INTEGRITY: His hit show Hill Street Blues was hailed as a model of gritty urban realism, and it made executive producer Steven Bochco a big force to be reckoned with in TV-land. After a less than amiable split from MTM Enterprises, Bochco returns to NBC next fall with his newest show, L.A. Law. Only this time around, Bochco's trying to keep a slightly lower profile, kind of. "Of course I'm making compromises," he says. "There's nothing wrong with that—just as long as the people you're dealing with make more compromises than you do."

ALTHOUGH IN HIS CASE IT TOOK A LITTLE LONGER: During British Prime Minister Margaret Thatcher's historic trip to Israel, her husband, Denis, found himself at a reception with Anatoli Shcharansky. "You know, we two have something in common," said Shcharansky, recently freed from the Soviet Union after years of lobbying by his wife, Avital. "What's that?" Thatcher asked. "Both of us," said Shcharansky, "you and me, are in Israel thanks to our wives."

HOW ABOUT THE YEAR THEY INVENTED THE HOT TUB? She may play vicious, cold-blooded Sable on The Colbys, but British actress Stephanie Beacham is really a concerned mother with old-fashioned values. Asked why she still hasn't moved her daughters, 11-year-old Phoebe and 9-year-old Chloe, to Los Angeles from London, she said, "Because of the wealth in Southern California, the children have the most ghastly materialistic attitude. I refuse to allow my daughters to live here until I meet children who are polite, not spoiled and know at least a few dates in history."

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