People in the news

Harry eschews his royal label

LONDON (AP) — Just call him Harry.

The British prince who is preparing to step back from royal duties would normally be referred to as sir or his royal highness. But as he was introduced to speak about sustainable tourism at an event in Scotland today, the Duke of Sussex said the formality no longer was necessary.

“He’s made it clear that we are all just to call him Harry,” conference host Ayesha Hazarika said. “So ladies and gentlemen, please give a big, warm Scottish welcome to Harry.”

The request reflected the seismic shift underway in the British monarchy.

Prince Harry and his wife, Meghan, say they will walk away from most royal duties starting March 31, give up public funding and try to become financially independent. The couple, who were named the Duke and Duchess of Sussex on their wedding day, have also abandoned plans to use the “SussexRoyal” brand because of U.K. rules governing the use of the word “royal.”

‘Flash Gordon’ headed to auction

LOS ANGELES (AP) — The original artwork for the “Flash Gordon” comic strip is headed for a new realm — the auction block.

The auction house Profiles in History said today that it will sell the drawing on March 31. The pencil-and-ink drawing by artist Alex Raymond was first published in Jan. 1934, and the series quickly grew in influence, spawning movies and inspiring later science fiction stories like “Star Wars.”

Profiles in History says it is the first time the artwork is up for sale.

The first story, drawn on a large illustration board, within a few panels takes Flash Gordon from being a passenger on a plane to being a hostage on a rocket headed toward a planet on a collision course with Earth.

The “Flash Gordon” strip was commissioned as a competitor to the Buck Rogers series. Raymond, who died in 1956, was praised for the artistry of his strips.

The auction will also feature another Raymond creation, “Jungle Jim,” his answer to the Tarzan character.

Douglas, Zeta-Jones to co-host ceremony

JERUSALEM (AP) — Hollywood power couple Michael Douglas and Catherine Zeta-Jones are set to return to Israel as co-hosts of this year’s Genesis Prize ceremony.

The Genesis Prize Foundation announced on Wednesday that the pair would co-host the June 18 event, where former Soviet dissident and Israeli politician Natan Sharansky is to be honored as the 2020 laureate.

Douglas, 75, was the 2015 winner of the prestigious $1 million prize, granted each year in recognition of professional achievement, contribution to humanity and commitment to Jewish values and Israel. He is recognized for his cinematic work and advocacy for disarmament as a U.N. Messenger of Peace.

Douglas, whose mother wasn’t Jewish and who himself is intermarried, directed his award toward projects promoting diversity and inclusiveness in the Jewish world.

“Catherine and I look forward to returning to Israel, a country our entire family loves so much,” Douglas said in a statement. “We are particularly honored to have the opportunity to host the ceremony honoring a true Jewish hero, Natan Sharansky.”

By Kerry Minor

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