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Entertainment: News In Brief

Tuesday, July 27, 1999 Published at 14:36 GMT 15:36 UK

Matthau on road to recovery

Walter Matthau, veteran star of films like The Odd Couple and Grumpy Old Men, is due home after two and a half months in a Los Angeles hospital.

The 78-year-old actor was admitted to hospital on 16 May with pneumonia but his agent says he is "recuperating" and is expected to return home soon.

Matthau shot to fame in 1965 with the Broadway comedy, The Odd Couple and won an Oscar for The Fortune Cookie the following year.

He recently completed filming Hanging Up, which also stars Diane Keaton, Meg Ryan and Lisa Kudrow.

Gere puts his foot in it in Hollywood

Richard Gere has become the latest celebrity to leave his hand and footprints in the courtyard of Mann's Chinese Theater in Los Angeles.

The Hollywood actor, 50 next month and a father-to-be, was cheered on by hundreds of fans as he put hands and feet in the wet concrete.

His latest movie, Runaway Bride, which reunites him with his Pretty Woman co-star Julia Roberts, opens in the UK on Friday.

Millennium a virtual reality for Robbie

Robbie Williams is set to become the latest pop star to feature as a virtual character in a computer game.

According to Music Week magazine, the singer is recording a song called It's Only Us for the football game FIFA 2000, due to be launched this year.

A spokesman for Robbie's record company Chrysalis told the magazine: "It's good fun and that's what Rob's all about."

The track is likely to be released on a double A-side single in November.

African Queen in fund-raising cruises

The African Queen, the boat that rescued Katharine Hepburn from the depths of the African Jungle, is sailing the Michigan waters in aid of charity.

James Hendricks, a Hepburn fan who bought the boat in 1982, is offering half-hour cruises for $15, about £9.

Hendricks says he wrote to Hepburn in the early 1980s to ask if she would like to ride the African Queen again, but the actress replied she thought the boat had been "blown up in Africa".

Humphrey Bogart rescued her in the boat in the 1951 film of the same name.

Radio 1 commissions new rock show

BBC Radio 1 is to revive its rock show after three years off the air, with a new two-hour weekly programme presented by Mary Anne Hobbs from midnight every Wednesday.

The station ditched its dedicated rock programme back in 1996. But with the revived interest in rock a new show has been commissioned from September 21.

Hobbs, who presents the Breezeblock show, said: "We'll be playing everything from Coal Chamber to Mogwai, Metallica to Ash and operating at the cutting edge of this thrilling scene."

Ike's book aims to set record straight

Singing star Ike Turner has written a book about his marriage to pop star Tina Turner and his long problems with drug abuse and sex.

Takin' Back My Name will be released in September and is his response to claims his ex-wife made in her book and film What's Love Got To Do With It?

"That movie gave me high notoriety. Now people see Tina as a woman scorned... I'm not denying things, just telling my side of the story," said Turner.

Kim's sister takes a walk on the Wilde side

The sister of 1980s singing star Kim Wilde is set to continue the family trade with a career in pop.

Roxanne Wilde, 19, and her as-yet-unnamed band, guided by ex-Bananarama manager Hilary Shaw, have been snapped up by Polydor.

The band are described as "pop". but all play their own instruments.

Kim and Roxanne's father, Marty, was a rock'n'roll idol in the 50s and their mum, Joyce, was in the Vernon Girls.

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