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‘The Crown’ taps its newest queen

NEW YORK (AP) — “The Crown,” Netflix’s hit drama series about the British royal family, will end earlier than expected and has revealed its next and last queen.

Show creator and showrunner Peter Morgan had said he expected to create six seasons, but now thinks five is the “perfect time and place to stop.”

Imelda Staunton has been tapped to be the last actress to play Queen Elizabeth II. She will take the crown in the fifth season from Olivia Colman, who, in turn, succeeded Claire Foy. “Imelda is an astonishing talent and will be a fantastic successor,” Morgan said in a statement Friday.

Staunton is an Olivier Award-winner whose films include “Vera Drake,” “Nanny McPhee” and “Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows.” She played Lady Maud Bagshaw in the “Downton Abbey” movie.

Sandler signs deal with Netflix

LOS ANGELES (AP) — Expect more Adam Sandler in your Netflix feed.

The streaming giant announced Friday that Sandler and his Happy Madison Productions have reached a new deal with Netflix to make four more films. He’s had five films with the studio along with the stand-up special “Adam Sandler: 100% Fresh.”

Netflix leader Ted Sarandos said the company is excited to extend its partnership with Sandler, because audiences “love his stories and his humor.” The company said his 2019 comedy “Murder Mystery” starring him and Jennifer Aniston was the most popular film on Netflix in the U.S. last year and one of the most popular in eight other countries.

Sandler’s latest film “Uncut Gems,” which was released in theaters last year to critical acclaim, will premiere on Netflix in May.

Health chief slams Paltrow’s brand

LONDON (AP) — The chief executive of Britain’s National Health Service has criticized Gwyneth Paltrow’s lifestyle brand Goop and her new Netflix series, warning it carries “considerable risks to health.”

At an event in Oxford on Thursday, NHS chief Simon Stevens slammed Paltrow’s brand for giving prominence to “quacks, charlatans and cranks” in promoting untested treatments like vampire facials and unusually scented candles.

“Gwyneth Paltrow’s brand peddles ‘psychic vampire repellent,’ says ‘chemical sunscreen is a bad idea,’ and promotes colonic irrigation and DIY coffee enema machines,” he said, adding British health authorities have issued advice stating there is no scientific evidence to support such claims.

Paltrow’s six-part series, “The goop lab with Gwyneth Paltrow,” was recently made available on Netflix in the U.K.

Stevens warned about the potential of misinformation to undermine public health, citing the recent surge in measles across Britain. Scientists have attributed the disease’s rise in part to falling vaccination rates, first prompted by skepticism about the vaccine suggested in a discredited scientific study in a 1998 medical study that linked the shot to autism.

By Kerry Minor

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