The Insider

updated 03/28/1994 at 01:00 AM EST

originally published 03/28/1994 01:00AM

SEARCHING FOR GOLD
Longtime fiancés Harry Connick Jr., 26, and former Victoria's Secret model Jill Goodacre. 29, are finally closing in on a wedding dale. The couple—together since 1989 and engaged since 1991—were recently-spotted shopping for wedding bands at Tiffany's in New York City. While a source close to the couple couldn't say for sure that they had actually purchased the rings, the source did say that "a wedding is not far away."

THEIR SEPARATE WAYS

On the other end of the romance spectrum: Melissa Gilbert and Bruce Boxleitner have broken off their six-month engagement—and, contrary to published reports, Gilbert, 29, is not devastated. In fact, we hear, the split was her idea. According to a source close to her, "She wanted kids, and he didn't. She didn't want to marry someone who didn't want kids." Gilbert already has a son, Cody, 4, from her marriage to actor Bo Brinkman. Boxleitner, 43, has sons Sam, 13, and Lee, 7, from his marriage to actress Kathryn Holcomb.

Gilbert has already-moved out of Boxleilner's L.A. house and bought her own place, but the two remain friends. Boxleitner seems philosophic about the split. "I still love her very much," he says, "and regret that our relationship did not work out. We just grew in different directions."

MICHAELS NEW FAN

Long before it became open season on Michael Jackson, Nation of Islam leader Louis Farrakhan told PEOPLE (NOV. 27, 1984) that Jackson's "Jheri Kurl, female-acting, sissificdacting expression is not wholesome for our young boys, nor our young girls."

Recently, though, Farrakhan seems to have changed his tune. He was not only seen in a front-row seat at The Jackson Family Honors TV special last month, but when asked why he was there, he simply responded, "Michael." Next, Farrakhan defended Jackson during an appearance on The Arsenio Hall Show, claiming that the King of Pop was being "treated like a slave on a plantation."

So what's the deal? Farrakhan declined to explain, and a Jackson spokesman says only that Farrakhan was "not a guest of Michael's at The Jackson Family Honors, and Michael is not a member of the Nation of Islam or any organized religion."

EXPLICITLY RABBITLIKE

Imagine Disney's reaction when it became public last week that if you watch Who Framed Roger Rabbit frame by frame on laser disc at home, you can see otherwise undetectable frontally nude shots of its cartoon star, Jessica Rabbit, not to mention sexually explicit sequences involving other characters.

In fact, Disney's response was surprisingly measured. A spokeswoman says the company is "neither shocked nor surprised." Little wonder, since, according to a Disney source, the company has known about the altered frames since the 1988 film was released on laser disc. That may be why, we hear, Disney has no plans to re-edit the disc or recall the thousands of copies already in circulation.

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