A sleazy tabloid editor (Burt Lancaster) hires an out-of-work reporter (Pamela Reed) that is friends with a big movie star (Lauren Hutton) and her alcoholic husband (Robert Urich) in hopes that she’ll write a tell-all expose. Burt showers her with lots of mullah so she’ll compromise her journalistic integrity for some quick cash. This understandably causes a severe strain on Pamela’s friendship with the unstable stars.
Scandal Sheet is a predictable by-the-numbers made-for-TV melodrama (produced by Henry Winkler of all people) that at least has the benefit of some good performances.
Director David Lowell (The Concorde-Airport ’79) Rich lays on the drama nice and thick and keeps the plot moving at an adequate pace for the most part. (The subplot about dead Siamese twin boys unfortunately helps to pad out the running time.) The film is still relevent nearly a quarter of a century later as paparazzi photographers and unscrupulous tabloid editors are still a dime a dozen. Overall the flick is watchable, but not very compelling. It’s better than most made-for-TV offerings from the 80’s, although that’s not say a whole heck of a lot. I did get a kick out of some of the nonsensical tabloid headlines like “Bishop Decides Spaceship Baby Illegitimate!”
Reed gets the best line of the film when she bitterly asks Hutton, “When’s the last time you made a movie with all your clothes on!”
AKA: The Devil’s Bed.