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Wednesday, 6 December, 2000, 16:51 GMT
Chuck Berry musician sues
A pianist who claims he co-wrote some of legendary rock 'n' roller Chuck Berry's greatest hits is suing for millions of dollars in royalties.

Johnnie Johnson, 76, said he had a hand in about 50 of Berry's songs, including No Particular Place To Go, Sweet Little Sixteen and Roll Over Beethoven.

Johnson said Berry, 74, took advantage of his alcoholism and misled him into believing that only Berry was entitled to the copyrights.


Archer debut gets bad reception

Author Jeffrey Archer made his West End acting debut on Tuesday night in his new play The Accused, and was greeted with a chorus of raspberries from the critics.

"To describe Archer's acting as wooden would be to insult even the humblest piece of furniture," said Nicholas de Jongh of the London Evening Standard.

Michael Coveney echoed that damning verdict in the Daily Mail.

"Watching Jeffrey perform is like watching a talking clock trying vainly to speak."


Potter is Radio Times star

Teenage wizard Harry Potter is to take over the cover of the Christmas Radio Times double issue - the first time in 25 years that Santa has been ousted.

The cover shot marks BBC Radio 4's reading of the first Harry Potter book in an eight-and-a-half hour marathon.

"For the first time in Radio Times's 77-year history, the Christmas cover is devoted to a single radio programme," said editor Sue Robinson.

Stephen Fry's reading of Harry Potter and the Philosopher's Stone will air uninterrupted on Boxing Day.


Downey Jr 'depressed'

Actor Robert Downey Jnr, who is once again facing drugs charges, reportedly sought help for depression during a brief hospital stay over the weekend.

The Chaplin star is said to have checked in to the psychiatric unit of Cedars Sinai medical centre in Los Angeles on Friday. His spokesman declined to comment.

A spokesman for Fox TV network said Downey remains under contract to Ally McBeal in which he has a recurring role as Ally's boyfriend.


Redgrave honoured in Bristol

Screen star Sir Michael Redgrave has been honoured in his birthplace, the city of Bristol, with the unveiling of a plaque by his son, Corin.

Corin Redgrave told how Sir Michael, whose many films include The Lady Vanishes and The Dam Busters, was named after St Michael's Church in Bristol.

Actor Corin, whose credits include Four Weddings and a Funeral, unveiled the plaque at a house where his grandmother temporarily lodged in 1908.

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