If Richard Gere is around, women spring to attention. Literally. On the Chicago set of Gere's upcoming courtroom thriller, Primal Fear, costar Laura Linney (Congo) reports that females straining to catch a glimpse of the 45-year-old star would often resort to flight. ''I didn't have to ask where Richard was,'' says Linney. ''All I would have to do was look down at the jumping feet. Some days, women were up and down like pogo sticks.'' Gere, whose First Knight opens July 7, responded graciously, Linney adds: ''He signed autographs and smiled a lot. I expected some of the women to pass out.'' Well, the air is thinner up there.