Rambling Reporter

2012-22 TOWN Rambling Sparkle H

Sony's remake of 1976's "Sparkle" has definitely generated heightened interest following the death of star Whitney Houston. Howard Rosenman, the original's producer and exec producer of the 2012 version, says a novelization was sold six weeks ago to Simon & Schuster.

Mrs. Lynton's Sparkle? Sony's remake of 1976's Sparkle has definitely generated heightened interest following the death of star Whitney Houston. Howard Rosenman, the original's producer and exec producer of the 2012 version, says a novelization was sold six weeks ago to Simon & Schuster. He also is teaming with Joel Schumacher to add five new songs to those by Curtis Mayfield (in the original) and R. Kelly (in the new version) for a full-blown Broadway musical adaptation. Meanwhile, Sony, sensing new potential, sent a lot of notes to director Salim Akil, whose wife, Mara Brock Akil, penned the screenplay. Akil was already near a final cut. When THR's Kim Masters interviewed him for an upcoming episode of KCRW's The Business, she noted that she had heard directives had even come from Sony CEO Michael Lynton's wife, Jamie. Akil's response: "Wow, you have some deep sources there."

Arch de Triumph?

Pritzker Prize-winning starchitect Rem Koolhaas -- hot off his pyramidal temporary pavilion for Kanye West's Cruel Summer premiere at Cannes -- will be the subject of Rem, a documentary to be completed in 2013 and directed by his filmmaker son, Tomas. But don't expect the two to work through any Daddy issues as Louis Kahn's son Nathaniel did in the Oscar-nominated My Architect. "That film was very sentimental," says Tomas, who had to convince his father to allow him to proceed. "He's not big on nepotism at all. I had to really pitch him on it." What won Koolhaas was his son's pull-no-punches approach. Among the touchy topics to be covered is the 2009 Beijing fire (caused by illegal fireworks set off by local residents) that destroyed Koolhaas' under-construction Television Cultural Centre tower and left him grief-stricken. "It was very tough for him," says Tomas. "It would be like if Steven Spielberg saw the whole reel of E.T. get burned up before it got screened."

Mad Men's Weiner Feisty At Academy Appearance

Famously tight-lipped Mad Men creator Matthew Weiner let some light in at a TV Academy panel following the finale screening June 10. He revealed that Vincent Kartheiser had to fatten up and was given a receding hairline to depict aging Pete, the firm's weaselly rainmaker. Meanwhile, when an academy member suggested that seeing partner Lane's (Jared Harris) dead body hanging was "disturbing," Weiner shot back, "As a dramatist, the fact that you found it disturbing is very exciting to me!" He also was defensive about media criticism that Joan (Christina Hendricks) wouldn't have accepted an indecent proposal that advanced her at the company. "People who think this is out of character haven't watched the show," he said.

Cool New Condos Alert

THR hears that West Hollywood's chicly under-the-radar Palihouse Holloway, the boutique extended-stay lodge popular with Robert Pattinson, Kristen Stewart and plenty of other hot talent, will soon convert part of its property into condos. Eight units are set to go on sale this summer, and like the residential owners at the Montage in Beverly Hills, they'll partake in hotel guest privileges like room service.

Don Rickles' Black Humor

Insult comic Don Rickles compared President Obama to a janitor at the AFI tribute to Shirley MacLaine on June 7. Was it racist -- or just Rickles? Dennis Haysbert, himself skewered for appearing in Allstate ads, carefully tells THR, "I thought what Don said about me was very funny." But, observes Tamara Rawitt, who co-created and produced In Living Color, of the POTUS slam: "What was kind of magical was watching a room of deeply discreet A-listers secretly get off on watching someone getting a day pass to rant and rave. You need two AARP cards to get away with stuff like that."

Power Lunch

On June 11, Fox Searchlight co-president Nancy Utley stopped into Caulfield's at the Thompson Hotel. … Paradigm's Chris Smith and Red Hour Films executive Debbie Liebling recently visited Kate Mantilini. … Cameron Diaz ate at Ray's and Stark Bar at LACMA. … Manager Shelley Browning and Imagine executive vp Erica Huggins shared a booth at the Grill on the Alley. … Steven Spielberg joined a group at Wolfgang Puck at Hotel Bel-Air. Another day, Christina Aguilera and boyfriend Matt Rutler shared a table. … Lady Gaga and Elton John dined together at Craig's. … Elizabeth Banks dropped by the Restaurant at Mr. C. … Reese Witherspoon and her husband, CAA's Jim Toth, checked out Santa Monica's Tar & Roses. … Jennifer Love Hewitt is making a consecutive Wednesday habit out of Casa Vega in the Valley. … Among recent visitors to FIG in Santa Monica: Adam Sandler, Olivia Newton-John, Anthony Hopkins, Giada De Laurentiis and Arnold Schwarzenegger. Judd Apatow and Leslie Mann also have made an appearance of late. … Kristen Bell, Dax Shepard and Jimmy Kimmel together tucked into Philadelphia cheesesteaks and fried chicken at Sadie in Hollywood. Jonah Hill, Danny McBride and Piers Morgan were in at other times.