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Costner, wife are divorcing

Academy Award-winning actor-director Kevin Costner and his wife, Cindy, are divorcing after 16 years of marriage, the couple announced. After weeks of rumors about an impending breakup, the couple issued a statement saying, "We did not come to this decision easily, and on behalf of our entire family we ask to be allowed the dignity of sorting through this most painful part of our lives in private." The two, who married as college sweethearts, have three children. No reason was given for the split. Costner's films have won seven Academy Awards, including best director for Dances With Wolves. He is currently working on the big-budget movie Waterworld, a futuristic adventure.

Uh, sorry, Robin

The Genie got his wish. The Walt Disney Co. has apologized to Robin Williams for using his Genie voice to hawk merchandise from the 1992 animated hit movie Aladdin. "We had a specific understanding with Robin that we wouldn't do that. (Nevertheless) we did that. We apologize for it," Disney studio chief Joe Roth said in Monday's Los Angeles Times. Disney also should have disputed reports Williams was complaining because he agreed to take scale pay of $75,000 and the movie grossed more than $200-million, Roth said. Williams has said he lent his voice as a favor to Disney, not to make money. "I've known Robin for years and know that none of these issues are ever about money," Roth said. "They are simply about principle." Williams likened the apology to "a country re-establishing diplomatic relations." And he said he will do some more Disney work. The comedian has appeared in the Disney movies Good Morning, Vietnam in 1987 and Dead Poets Society in 1989.

In other news . . .

The TV networks are sending their evening news anchors to the Middle East for live coverage of Wednesday's signing of the Jordan-Israel peace accord. ABC's Peter Jennings, CBS' co-anchor Connie Chung and NBC's Tom Brokaw will originate their reports from the ceremonial site at the Arava border crossing. Since the signing is scheduled for 7 a.m. EDT, the reports will be incorporated into the networks' morning shows.

There was no question about it this time: Pulp Fiction was the nation's most popular film over the weekend. Competitors said Miramax Films inflated grosses for the crime drama last week, and The Specialist was really No. 1. This time around, Pulp Fiction won by a wide margin, grossing $8.4-million. The Specialist was second with $6.1-million.

Singer Melissa Etheridge will make a live online appearance in the CompuServe Convention Center at 9 p.m. Wednesday. The Grammy Award winner will discuss her album Yes I Am and current tour and will answer fan questions.

The Rockford Files: I Love L.A., with James Garner reprising his NBC role as laid-back private eye Jim Rockford, will air Nov. 27 on CBS. L.A., the first in a series of Rockford TV movies, co-stars Joanna Cassidy in the new character of defense attorney Kit Kittredge, Rockford's ex-wife. Stuart Margolin reprises his role as Angel Martin, with Joe Santos returning as Detective Dennis Becker.