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Wednesday, 5 February, 2003, 11:28 GMT
Tribute paid to Spector house victim
Lana Clarkson had worked on Roger Corman's films
Clarkson was a regular guest at film conventions
Lana Clarkson, the woman found dead in record producer Phil Spector's home, was a "wonderful actress" according to the man who cast her in his films.

B-movies producer Roger Corman added that Clarkson, who appeared in 80s shows including Knight Rider and The A-Team, also inspired the hugely popular TV series Xena: Warrior Princess.

Lana was a beautiful woman, a wonderful actress, and an adventurous spirit

Roger Corman
Mr Spector has been charged with first-degree murder after the actress was found shot dead inside his mansion in Los Angeles, and has been released on $1m (625,000) bail.

The record producer, famous for producing acts like the Beatles, the Ronettes, Tina Turner, and the Ramones, will appear in court to hear formal charges later this week.

Los Angeles County coroner's office said the investigation into the death showed that Mr Spector met Ms Clarkson at a nightclub in the area.

Mr Corman said Ms Clarkson, 40, had many qualities, adding she was "always brave - she performed all of her own stunts, and showed unusual fortitude and athleticism in her horseback riding and fight sequences".

Phil Spector, pictured in 1998
Phil Spector is considered a musical pioneer

She also had her own production company, called Living Doll Productions, and a website.

The actress was also a regular at comic book and film conventions for her roles in Mr Corman's films.

But her acting career had stalled in recent times, and she had taken a job as a ticket collector and hostess at a blues bar on Los Angeles' Sunset Strip, reports said.

"She wasn't thrilled to have people from the industry see her doing that, but she thought it was a good step to get back into the mainstream," said her neighbour Paul Pietrewicz.

A lawyer for Ms Clarkson's family said they wanted to be left to grieve in peace.

Phil Spector's house
Spector owns a 10-bedroom mansion in Los Angeles
Mr Spector, 62 was arrested at his mansion in the suburb of Alhambra around 0500 (1300 GMT) on Monday after police had been alerted.

Los Angeles County Sheriff's Department said a firearm had been recovered in the mansion and no-one else was being sought in connection with the killing.

Officers sealed off the front of the house, a 10-bedroom mansion called Pyrenees Castle, and examined a black Mercedes car parked in the driveway. Forensic teams are continuing to search the house.

Musical career

Neighbours said the reclusive multi-millionaire, who reportedly lived alone, had not been seen at the house recently.

Mr Spector is considered a pioneer in rock music production and is famed for his influential technique, known as the Wall of Sound, which featured soaring orchestration and multi-layered vocals.

It became a trademark of some of the most acclaimed pop hits of the 1960s, such as The Crystals' Da Doo Ron Ron and the Ronettes' Be My Baby.

Mr Spector won two Grammy awards for his work and is featured in the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame museum in Ohio.

See also:

04 Feb 03 | Americas
15 Nov 01 | Entertainment
04 Feb 03 | Entertainment
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