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Thursday, 25 January, 2001, 20:00 GMT
Sub drama for Ford and Neeson
Harrison Ford and Liam Neeson are to star in a new Cold War suspense film, K-19: The Widowmaker.

Based on a true story, K-19 tells of a Soviet submarine crew's attempt to keep their payload from a nuclear meltdown.

Directed by Kathryn Bigelow, the film will begin production in February in Canada and Russia.

Hollywood veteran Ford will play the commander of the submarine.

Academy honour for De Laurentiis

Italian movie-maker Dino De Laurentiis, producer of Hannibal, will receive the Irving G Thalberg Memorial Award during the Oscar ceremony on 25 March.

The award, set up in 1937, is bestowed on "creative producers whose bodies of work reflect a consistently high quality of motion picture production".

De Laurentiis's many credits include Barbarella, Death Wish, Blue Velvet, Serpico, Dune, Conan the Barbarian and the 1976 remake of King Kong.

Downey Jr wife files for divorce

The estranged wife of actor Robert Downey Jr has filed for divorce and is seeking custody of their seven-year-old son.

Deborah Falconer married the actor in May 1992. They separated in 1996.

The 35-year-old model and actress cited irreconcilable differences in the divorce petition.

The news comes less than a week before Downey Jr is due back in court in California. He faces drug charges which could land him back in prison.

'N Sync star in the movies

Boy band star Lance Bass is to team up with a former executive of Tom Hanks' production company to make music-led films starring pop stars and athletes.

Bass, a member of 'N Sync, will star in the first film, On the Line, alongside group-member Joey Fatone.

The romantic comedy is about a couple who meet briefly on a train and must then find a way to reunite.

Miramax Films is in final negotiations to pick up distribution rights.

Manson hits the UK

Rock star Marilyn Manson met British fans on Tuesday night in a German SS peaked cap and a black leather coat.

The US singer kept fans waiting for 45 minutes before arriving at the Virgin Megastore in Oxford Street, London, to promote his new album, Holy Wood.

"He has a really dry sense of humour and shows his fans respect," said one.

Manson and his band are visiting a handful of cities on a UK tour with gigs in Manchester, Birmingham and London.

McConaughey buys ranch

Actor Matthew McConaughey has bought a ranch in his home state of Texas.

The 31-year-old star of EdTV, who also appears in The Wedding Planner with Jennifer Lopez, paid over $500,000 for the 1,600 acre ranch in Irion County.

McConaughey's brother Mike found the ranch for the actor, who grew up about 150 miles from his new home.

The previous owners sold the ranch complete with livestock.

Vaughan funeral service planned

A memorial service is to be held for entertainer Frankie Vaughan, who died in September 1999 at the age of 70.

Many celebrities are due to attend the service on 4 February at New West End Synagogue in London.

Former heavyweight boxer Henry Cooper will speak while confirmed guests include the Duke of Gloucester.

Crooner Vaughan spent 50 years in showbusiness, becoming a film idol with a role alongside Marilyn Monroe.

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