The Insider

updated 12/24/1990 AT 01:00 AM EST

originally published 12/24/1990 AT 01:00 AM EST

BASINGER'S $3 MILLION LEG ACY

The Hollywood grapevine often exaggerates the amount of money that a star receives for a job. So it was a surprise when Kim Basinger's older brother, Mick, called us to say this magazine had under reported his sister's take for doing a Golden Lady panty-hose commercial that shows in Italy (PEOPLE, Dec. 3).

We had said that Kim, 37, made a reported $1 million plus to plug Golden Lady. Brother Mick insists she really earned "just under $3 million," or, as he adds helpfully, "more than a million a leg."

Mick, 39, who helps oversee Kim's business activities and therefore has a vested interest in maintaining her going rate, says his sister also recently shot a Lux soap commercial, scheduled to air in Japan and Europe, "for approximately the same dollars" as Golden Lady.

Although we may never see those commercials on American television, Kim's brother says she will ally herself with an American corporate sponsor, possibly for a concert tour and ads, "when her music career kicks off" with an album next year.

As to a certain diamond ring that little sister Kim has been seen wearing on the third finger of her left hand, the one her reps have been calling a friendship ring, that was given to her recently by beau Alec Baldwin, 32. all her brother would say was, "No comment."

IT'S NEVER TOO LATE

At press time, 82-year-old director Sir David (Lawrence of Arabia) Lean was planning to marry art dealer Sandra Cooke, 51, on Dec. 14 in Mougins, a village near Cannes. He is in France preparing to start filming in March on Nostromo, his 17th movie as a director. Nostromo is a period piece about greed and betrayal based on the Joseph Conrad novel.

Because of Lean's age, sources say Tri-Star Pictures has signed director Guy Hamilton, 68. who directed Live and Let Die and two other James Bond movies, to be a backup director in case Lean should falter once production begins. Nostromo reunites Lean with Robert Bolt, 64. who wrote the screenplay for Lawrence of Arabia.

Our sources tell us that only British stage star Paul Scofield has been cast so far, although Mel Gibson is said to be the leading contender for the film's starring role, and Marlon Brando may also be signed.

DELTA BURKE: A CLOSED BOOK

As in baseball, where it's three strikes and you're out, so it apparently goes in the world of celebrity books, where the credo for one book publisher seems to have become three ghostwriters and you're out. At least that was the call made by Pocket Books and Delta Burke. They canceled plans to publish the 34-year-old actress's autobiography after Delta's third attempted collaboration with a ghostwriter fell apart.

According to one source, the first ghost dropped out of the project amid battles with the co-star of Designing Women over content. A second source had said the second collaborator wasn't up to the task. And a Pocket Books representative, who six weeks ago described Burke's relationship with Ghost No. 3 as "wonderful," now says the publishing house could not comment.

NO ONE SNARED THE DRUMS
Legendary rock drummer Ginger Baker, 51, came to play. That's why, when he drove up to Beverly Hills's Neiman Marcus for a party celebrating Spago maître d' Bernard Erpicum's new video, Celebrity Guide to Wine, Baker had a 25-piece drum kit in his battered truck. But when he started unloading his gear, the store manager had a cow. Baker agreed to party drumless but didn't want to leave his set in the open truck. Erpicum to the rescue: "I called around to my Beverly Hills friends and found one who didn't mind locking up Ginger's truck in his garage," he says. Bet that generous person now has a lifetime table at L.A.'s most famous restaurant.

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