Tabloid takes shots at Harry

London � Prince Charles' office said on Sunday that a tabloid report about his younger son's drinking at a party was exaggerated and that Prince Harry had been doing nothing illegal.

The News of the World reported that Harry, 17, drank 6 bottles of a vodka-laced drink � equivalent to nine shots of the liquor � at a polo club party on Friday evening.

A spokeswoman for St. James' Palace, Prince Charles' office in London, said the newspaper report was "blown out of all proportion."

"He was at a private party and had a couple of drinks. He has not done anything wrong. He has not done anything illegal," she said on customary condition of anonymity.

Harry, then 16, admitted last summer that he'd drunk with friends at a pub near his father's Highgrove country estate and smoked marijuana with friends, according to press reports confirmed by a royal source.

Marijuana is illegal in Britain, and the drinking age is 18.

'Sopranos' to focus on marriage

Pasadena, Calif. � Tony and Carmela Soprano's relationship will be at the heart of "The Sopranos" when the hit HBO series returns for its fourth season, series creator David Chase said.

"This season focuses on Tony and Carmela, played by James Gandolfini and Edie Falco, as a couple, on their marriage," said Chase, who was generally tightlipped about what will befall the neurotic mobster, his therapist and his friends and relations starting in September.

Next season, the fifth, will be his last with the show, he said. He wouldn't predict that the series will end, noting HBO holds the rights.

Sharpton has falling out

New York � It's the Rev. Al Sharpton vs. the Empire State Building.

The preacher and the management at the 102-story midtown Manhattan landmark are feuding over the 48th floor offices of Sharpton's National Action Network, where a city eviction notice was hung on the door.

Sharpton was booted from the building for nonpayment of rent over the last six months, said building spokesman Howard Rubenstein. The activist's organization signed a 10-year lease three years ago, he said.

However, Sharpton maintained Saturday that he wasn't evicted. He said he moved out because the Sept. 11 terrorist attacks made it difficult to do business there.

Rubenstein wouldn't say how much back rent was owed. The New York Post put the figure at $40,000.

Channeling new fees

Pasadena, Calif. � Television viewers could face paying for channels they now receive free if digital video recorders kill commercials, said Jamie Kellner, chairman of Turner Broadcasting System.

The wider use of systems like TiVo and ReplayTV, which allow viewers to easily skip through ads, would force a change in how broadcast and basic cable TV is supported, Kellner said Friday.

Viewers could end up paying about $250 a year above any cable or satellite fees, he said, based on his own rough calculation.


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