FRENCH CUFF: Berlitz has nothing on Kevin Kline. While in Paris filming French Kiss with Meg Ryan, Kline gave Ryan a few language lessons and then some. ''Kevin explained to me that the French aren't rude if you immediately hit them with a little pleasantry,'' says Ryan. ''So he taught me this phrase that sounded like 'merci beaucoup.''' It was three weeks before she discovered that Kline had taught her to say ''Merci, beau cul.'' (''Thank you, nice ass.'') ''People were giving me the dirtiest looks,'' she adds. ''I just didn't understand didn't these people like my movies?'' Did Kline set her up? Mais bien sûr. ''It was sort of funny when she was telling the crew that they had nice asses,'' he says. ''But is it really horrible to tell someone they have a nice butt?'' Cindy Pearlman
MANY UNHAPPY RETURNS: No one is more impressed with the burgeoning career of Brad Renfro than, well, Brad Renfro. While filming The Cure, in which the 13-year-old actor plays a boy who befriends a child with AIDS, Renfro was a little more than preoccupied with his film debut in The Client. ''The night [it] opened the entire cast and crew went to see it,'' says Cure director Peter Horton. But that didn't satisfy Renfro. ''Every night he took someone new to see it. It got to the point where crew members were like, 'No! Please! I've seen it three times,''' says Horton, who went to multiple screenings. ''Brad especially liked standing up after the movie was over and having everyone look at him twice.'' There was one positive effect, however. Says Horton: ''If they ever do a Client sequel, I could play Brad's part. I know those lines in my sleep.''
HARD FINISH: As if it weren't chilling enough that the recent events in Oklahoma City unfolded so close to the release of the Bruce Willis terrorist-bomber thriller Die Hard With a Vengeance, the real irony is that filmmakers had just completed an additional, even more explosive finale when the tragedy struck. The new clincher involves a truck slamming through a roadblock and a helicopter that gets tangled in power lines. Given the movie's May 19 release, the reshoots were unusual and costly. According to one production source, Twentieth Century Fox had to borrow Willis from the set of Universal's Twelve Monkeys for three days; the on-set scuttlebutt had Fox paying $1 million for the loan. Fox has no comment on whether the heartland blast will alter the movie's ad campaign.