The Insider

UPDATED 04/11/1994 at 01:00 AM EDT Originally published 04/11/1994 at 01:00 AM EDT

I WILL ALWAYS OWE YOU

Whitney Houston may be in the money with a string of best-selling albums and three new Grammys, but her husband, Bobby Brown, is not doing nearly as well. In fact, the 25-year-old vocalist reportedly owes $3.4 million to the IRS and is suing his former business managers for $10 million, alleging that they mismanaged his funds.

Lucky for Brown that he has a wife who's more than just emotionally supportive. "Whitney's an extremely generous person," says a source close to her. "If Bobby is having problems, I'm sure she's helping out." However, Brown's manager, who says that his client's IRS debt has been exaggerated, insists "Bobby is working out his own problems."

HANGIN' WITH THE BOSS
What would you give to go on tour with Bruce Springsteen, travel with him on his private plane, have a front-row seat at a concert, come up onstage and sing a chorus with the man himself and even go backstage with the band when the show's over? Well, one Los Angeles resident coughed up $22,000 for the opportunity during the Center for Early Education's recent annual fund-raising gala. Not surprisingly, the exclusive L.A. nursery and elementary school counts among its students Evan James, 3, Springsteen's eldest son.

CAN YOU TOPPER THIS?

It's not just '60s TV shows like The Beverly Hillbillies and The Flintstones that Hollywood is recycling into feature films these days; producers are reaching back as far as the '20s in search of "new" material. Universal Pictures already has a movie version of The Little Rascals underway, complete with Alfalfa and Spanky look-alikes. Samuel Goldwyn Jr. is planning to produce a remake of the 1947 Academy Award nominee The Bishop's Wife and hopes to cast Denzel Washington and, yes, Whitney Houston in the lead roles.

And we hear that Universal and King World, the company that syndicates Oprah Winfrey's show, are talking about doing a remake of Topper, the 1937 comedy that starred Cary Grant and Constance Bennett as George and Marion Kerby, two jovial ghosts who can only be seen by their meek friend Cosmo Topper, played by Roland Young. It's early in the process—a director has yet to be named, much less stars signed on—but our source says that King World's wish list includes Tom Cruise and Julia Roberts as the phantom Kerbys and Eddie Murphy in the role of Topper.

REMEMBRANCE OF EVIL THINGS PAST
Though lie has already won Hollywood's highest honors for Schindler's List., Steven Spielberg is continuing his work as a chronicler of the Holocaust. According to a spokesman at Spielberg's company, Amblin Entertainment, the Academy Award-winning director "has already hired" a documentary film crew "to interview as many Holocaust survivors as possible." There are an estimated 350,000 such survivors in the world today, "and Steven would like to try to have them all interviewed." While Spielberg hasn't yet figured out what forms these interviews will ultimately take, one thing's for sure, says the rep: The project will be "for educational purposes only."

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