Bin Laden impersonator off hook for crashing prince's party

London -- A comedian who dressed up as Osama bin Laden and crashed Prince William's 21st birthday party won't face any charges, London's Metropolitan Police said Monday.

Self-styled "comedy terrorist" Aaron Barschak, 37, got into the June 21 event at Windsor Castle by scaling a steep embankment, climbing a tree, then jumping on to a wall and clambering to a terrace. Once inside, he persuaded police officers that he had legitimate business at the party.

The stunt was a major breach of royal security and has led to an official investigation.

Queen to honor 007

London -- After four missions on her majesty's secret service, Pierce Brosnan is getting some recognition from Queen Elizabeth II.

Brosnan, star of the last four James Bond films, will be made an honorary OBE or officer of the Order of the British Empire -- honorary, because the 50-year-old actor is Irish.

"From his first steps as an actor at the Drama Centre of London, through numerous starring roles on stage and screen, Pierce Brosnan has captivated audiences at home in Ireland, here in the U.K. and across the world," British Foreign Secretary Jack Straw said Monday.

The award will be presented by the British ambassador in Dublin, Stewart Eldon, on Saturday.

Actor: Advertisers shortchange black-oriented television shows

Los Angeles -- The economics of television advertising discriminate against black-oriented shows and those who work on them, actor-comedian Steve Harvey said.

Advertisers pay less for such programs even when the ratings equal or exceed those of other shows, Harvey told a meeting of the Television Critics Assn. on Sunday.

The result is, "African-Americans don't get to make what they deserve to make when they have a hit show," Harvey said, appearing before TV critics to promote his WB fall series, "Steve Harvey's Big Time."

Advertisers pay lower rates for programs that attract black audiences because they reason that blacks are among TV's more loyal customers, and it's easy to reach them across the TV dial, Harvey said.

Sounds like a sweet 16

Los Angeles -- Hilary Duff of "Lizzie McGuire" fame already has big plans for her 16th birthday in September.

The actress will star in two music specials for the WB network, one in connection with her Sept. 28 birthday and the other for Christmas for the 2003-2004 season, the network said Sunday.

Duff and musical guests, yet to be announced, will perform.

"We are thrilled to be starting a relationship with the Duff family and hope this is the beginning of a long alliance," WB Entertainment President Jordan Levin said in a statement.


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