'Endearment' sequel heads to Hollywood


HOLLYWOOD -- The rights to novelist Larry McMurtry's new novel "Evening Star," the sequel to his best-selling "Terms of Endearment," will probably end up at Paramount Pictures, the studio that made the Oscar-winning 1983 film. "Terms of Endearment" starred Shirley MacLaine, Jack Nicholson and Debra Winger and won Oscars for MacLaine, Nicholson and writer-director James L. Brooks.

A studio source confirmed that although the deal has not been completed, it would be shortly. Mr. McMurtry's agent also confirmed the imminent sale to Paramount. "We've discussed it and they say they're going to buy it," Irving Lazar said. "It looks very good, but they are waiting for other elements, which need to be worked out."

Mr. Lazar would not say what those "other elements" were. A spokesman for Miss MacLaine said that the actress had not been approached about reprising her role as Aurora Greenway. Mr. Brooks, who developed "Terms of Endearment" at Paramount, now has a long-term film and television deal at Columbia Pictures.

"Evening Star," a Simon & Schuster book that has an official publication date of June 5 but is in some bookstores now, takes up the story 15 years later and again concerns Aurora and her attempts to deal with aging. The novel also tells the story of Aurora's three grandchildren, the grown and troubled children of Emma, the character played by Miss Winger, who died at the end of "Terms of Endearment."

Garrett Breedlove, the astronaut who was Aurora's sometime boyfriend, was not in the book "Terms of Endearment"; Mr. Brooks added the character, played by Mr. Nicholson, in the screenplay. The character does not appear in "Evening Star" either.

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