Spader finds the humor in 'sex'

Sex, lies and videotape's James Spader says ''a lot of people were scared'' by the script that won him the best-actor award at the Cannes Film Festival.

''Some agencies weren't sending it to their clients,'' he'll tell Gene Shalit on NBC's Today show Tuesday. Spader liked the possibilities of his role as the troubled taper, but admits the acclaim and awards were ''such a surprise. ... The entertainment factor of the film is very confusing to me. ... I didn't know if the humor was going to work.''

Well, now we know it does. But what he doesn't tell Today about is the movie he left Cannes to start: Bad Influence with Rob Lowe, due next year. Lowe plays the bad influence and Spader is an exec drawn into a violent world. Unless they've changed it, Lowe gets cozy with a video camera again, and tapes Spader's character making love to a girl they picked up. She ends up in L.A.'s tar pits, but it's far from the end of the videotaping action.

© Jeannie Williams, 22 September 1989, USA Today (Thank you, Susan!)