LAST HURRAH While the Replacements, possibly the most critically acclaimed (and commercially ignored) American rock band of the '80s, were playing a rather strained Fourth of July concert in Chicago's Grant Park, the word backstage was that this show would be the group's swan song. The word onstage was not contradictory. ''This is the last time you're ever going to hear this song!'' bassist Tommy Stinson yelled at one point. The Replacements' tour had been dogged by rumors that they may need a replacement for singer-songwriter Paul Westerberg, said to be going solo. The band's management says only that the free Chicago show was the group's last for 1991
ROCK ACRONYMS You've probably heard what the initials of the new Van Halen album, For Unlawful Carnal Knowledge, spell out. But here's another wrinkle. Some who've listened to the No. 1 album suggest that the acronym formed by each word's second letter, O-N-A-N, may be a more appropriate title.
SCHIZO Joanne Woodward took home an Oscar for playing a character with multiple personalities (The Three Faces of Eve, 1957). Now some young actor will have the chance to show his ''faces'' in what filmmaker James Cameron (Terminator 2) calls ''the role of a lifetime.'' To begin shooting late this summer, The Crowded Room is based on the story of Billy Milligan, who was in his early 20s when it was learned he had 24 personalities. Says Cameron, who'll direct and cowrite, ''You may not agree with him, but you'll understand him.'' Casting is under way.
S-A-T-U-R-D-A-Y NIGHT! Billy Crystal turns film director with Mr. Saturday Night, in which he'll star as ''legendary'' comedian Buddy Young Jr., the character he created on Saturday Night Live. Crystal coscripted the saga, which traces Young's career from the '50s to today. Rob Reiner's Castle Rock Entertainment is producing; shooting begins in the fall.
ALWAYS PREPARED Warner Bros. has taken unusual steps to quash rumors surrounding producer Joel Silver's The Last Boy Scout, starring Bruce Willis. (Their latest collaboration was this summer's flop, Tri-Star's Hudson Hawk.) Warner executive vice president Mark Canton sent out a press release in late June to the effect that the action- packed thriller had come in on time and on budget. He noted Silver's past ''spectacular, highly successful pictures....I'm confident that The Last Boy Scout will continue that tradition.'' (Silver produced Die Hard and its sequel.) Still, sources say the budget has grown to more than $40 million (though Silver puts it at the original $37 million) and claim that its finale will require a major reshoot. Wait, there's more. The Boy Scouts of America are complaining that ''Boy Scout'' is a registered trademark and that the film written by Shane Black (Lethal Weapon) about an athlete and a detective who team up to find a murderer is inconsistent with the organization's image.
Bill Wyman, Dave DiMartino, Pat H. Broeske, Leonard Klady