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Last Updated: Sunday, 27 August 2006, 23:41 GMT 00:41 UK
Kipling TV drama for Potter star
Daniel Radcliffe
Daniel Radcliffe will star in the wartime drama
Harry Potter star Daniel Radcliffe is to star next year in an ITV1 drama about Rudyard Kipling's family during World World I.

He said he was "thrilled" to be playing the author's son in My Boy Jack, "a moving and powerful story".

"Young men are still going off to fight in wars from which many will never return," Radcliffe said.

ITV is hoping dramas starring Robbie Coltrane, Victoria Wood and Dame Helen Mirren will help ratings this autumn.

Its chief executive, Charles Allen, is leaving on 1 October following drops in viewing figures and commercial revenue.

ITV was "in the middle of a transition", he told the Edinburgh TV Festival on Friday, and promised it "would deliver" in future.

Cracker returns

The network has announced fresh runs of psychological drama Cracker - in which Coltrane's character Fitz returns to the UK after 10 years in Australia - and Prime Suspect, starring Dame Helen and Stephen Tompkinson.

Wood plays a frustrated middle-aged woman in Housewife, 49. It is her first ITV drama for a quarter of a century,

Helen Mirren
Dame Helen Mirren returns in another Prime Suspect crime drama
Other original programmes include Mysterious Creatures, a dramatisation of a suicide pact made by the parents of a sufferer of Asperger's syndrome, which features Timothy Spall and Brenda Blethyn.

Keeley Hawes plays the mother of an autistic boy in After Thomas and there are four unaired stories involving Rebus, the Edinburgh-based detective played by Ken Stott.

Entertainment highlights include a celebrity version of classic quiz Family Fortunes, hosted by Vernon Kay.

The X Factor, Ant and Dec's Saturday Night Takeaway and I'm Celebrity, Get Me Out of Here all return.

Mercury profile

There is what is described as the "definitive" profile of late Queen singer Freddie Mercury on 5 September, which would have been his 60th birthday.

Britain's greatest Olympian, Sir Steve Redgrave, is to host a reality show in which he coaches a group of young people from Liverpool to become rowers.

And digital channel ITV4 is to show editions of sketch show Saturday Night Live "two or three weeks" after they are transmitted in the US.

"We've got 29 drama titles," said ITV's director of television Simon Shaps.

"We have what we believe to be the first-ever joint interview between Elton John and Bernie Taupin on Parkinson.

"We have the debut of Trinny and Susannah on ITV1, and lots and lots of other really good things.

"We're really excited - and we keep on saying it - by the shows we've got coming on ITV1 this autumn."


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