The Insider

updated 02/19/1990 AT 01:00 AM EST

originally published 02/19/1990 AT 01:00 AM EST

WHY CRUISE WANTED OUT
Forget all the outrageous gossip about extramarital affairs and other nasty innuendos you've heard surrounding the impending Tom Cruise-Mimi Rogers divorce. The story we're hearing is that Tom was getting that seven-year itch four years early, and he wanted to scratch. But Tom also considers himself an honorable guy. So he opted to file for a divorce last month in Los Angeles rather than sneak around on Rogers (not that it would be easy for Cruise to go unrecognized). The word at this point is that Cruise is playing the field. As for Rogers, friends recently threw her a 35th-birthday celebration in Los Angeles that was described as her "coming-out party, of sorts."

PARAMOUNT: IT'S NOT JAKE

Success is cyclical in Hollywood. Back in 1987, Paramount Pictures was Hollywood's top-grossing studio, helped by Beverly Hills Cop II and Fatal Attraction. But by the end of 1989, it had fallen to fifth place, behind Warner Bros., Universal, Columbia/ Tri-Star and Disney. The bad news for Paramount is that the 1990 forecast appears cloudy, since two movies the studio had been counting on heavily to turn its fortunes around are proving difficult to complete.

The first is The Hunt for Red October, based on the Tom Clancy thriller and starring Sean Connery and Alec Baldwin. Estimates throughout the industry place the film's cost in the $50 million range. What's more, Paramount scheduled a March 2 release date even though postproduction on Hunt has yet to be completed. Then there's The Two Jakes, Jack Nicholson's long-awaited sequel to 1974's Chinatown. In December, Paramount said Jakes would open on March 30 even though Nicholson himself had informed executives there was no way it would be finished on time. Now the studio has had to push Jakes's release back to the end of August. Our sources, however, paint an even bleaker picture, saying the Jakes wait could last all the way to Christmas.

MUM'S NOT THE WORD
Disregard whatever you've read elsewhere in recent weeks about Cher, 43, being pregnant. She's not. That is not to say there isn't Cher news: Cher's boyfriend, Bon Jovi guitarist Richie Sambora, came off the road long enough to play on and help remix Cher's forthcoming single, Heart of Stone. The video of the song is expected to be shot on Valentine's Day. Then, in March, Cher starts her next concert tour. Also during March, she squeezes in the taping of an HBO special at the new Mirage hotel in Las Vegas. But, trust us, she's not pregnant.

LEWIS GETS BUMPED
Comedian Richard Lewis can now eliminate inappropriate anger from the list of subjects he regularly discusses with his therapist. On a recent lunch break from work, the co-star of ABC's Anything but Love was sitting at a red light in his two-door black Jaguar XJS when suddenly he was rear-ended by another automobile. Lewis jumped out of the car and slammed the door shut with such fury that the window shattered all over his car seat. Ironically, when Lewis and the other driver examined Lewis's rear bumper, neither could find even one scratch. Lewis now says, "I have such low self-esteem, I have no choice but to sue myself."

IN THE WASH
Fourteen years is a long time between car washes, but better late than never. A sequel to Universal's 1976 hit movie Car Wash, whose large cast included Richard Pryor, thirty-something's Melanie Mayron and the Pointer Sisters, is due to begin filming in May. Titled Re-Wash, the film will be directed by actor Forest (Bird) Whitaker. The cast has not been set. And, according to Gary Stromberg, producer of both Car Wash and Re-Wash, the downtown Los Angeles car wash used in the original was recently torn down and replaced by a mini mall.

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