By FRANK SWERTLOW
So how does a miniseries on CNN get made? If you are Ted Turner, vice chairman of Time Warner Inc. and founder of CNN, you just pick up the phone. That's how "Cold War," the mammoth 24-hour miniseries about the battle between East and West, was born. The series rolls Sept. 27. Moreover, Captain Outrageous, not surprisingly, wanted one man to produce the project, but he didn't know his name.
After some checking, it turned out to be Sir Jeremy Isaacs, who had produced a well-regarded series on World War II a few years ago. Isaacs was hired for the project.
To promote the miniseries, CNN planned to send TV critics a videocassette of clips from the project. No more. Turner decreed that all 24 hours of the series be sent to the scribes so they can knowledgeably chat with him and Issaacs next month at the annual TV critics convention in Pasadena.
For months, Hollywood observers wondered about the fate of Anne Heche after she become romantically involved with Ellen Degeneres in what has become one of the entertainment industry's least private love affairs.
In its first three weeks, her newest film, "Six Days, Seven Nights," starring Harrison Ford, is racing toward the $50 million mark, domestically.
More importantly, fan reaction appears positive to the romantic comedy. Following a recent afternoon showing of the Disney film at the Beverly Connection, fans cheered and applauded wildly.
"She is a very good actress," said Steve Cesinger, an investment banker who specializes on the entertainment industry for Greif & Co. "Unfortunately, she has had all this other baggage accompanying her, but at the end of the day I don't think this will slow her down. People want to see good actors and actresses."
The actress recently committed to star in director Alan Rudolph's quirky comedy, "Trixie," an independent film for Redeemable Features. Heche has finished Polygram's "Force Majure" with Vince Vaughn and is currently shooting the remake of Universal's "Psycho," directed by Gus Van Sant.
Ever since the death of Sonny Bono, Cher's career seems to be taking off. She heads to Italy where she will be shooting a World War II drama, "Tea With Mussolini," directed by Franco Zeffirelli. This fall, Cher shoots "The Breakers," a mother and daughter con-team comedy for Davis Entertainment.
On another project, Cher revisits a theme that made her a movie star in "Silkwood." She is developing a TV movie about the true-life story of workers exposed to radiation at the Oak Ridge, Tenn. nuclear facility.
Cher also has a new album, "Believe," for Warner Records, that will be out in the fall. She'll also be in bookstores this fall with "The First Time" for Simon & Schuster. It's a tome about her "first experiences" over a wide-ranging series of subjects.
A spokeswoman for the actress said Cher has not been capitalizing on the death of her late husband, but had many of these projects in the works before his demise.
Sightings: A very pregnant Sandra Bernhard at the opening of Ghost, a boutique on Robertson Boulevard in Beverly Hills
Also on Robertson, Connie Stevens, who has made millions selling cosmetics to home TV shoppers, is opening Garden Sanctuary, a new executive day spa and boutique that will also feature big-screen Monday Night Football games in the fall.
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