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Britain’s honors are bestowed twice a year by the monarch — at New Year’s and on her official birthday in June. Recipients are selected by committees of civil servants from nominations made by the government and the public.

James Earl Jones swears in friend as county sheriff

Not every county sheriff gets to be sworn in by the voice of Darth Vader.

Actor James Earl Jones performed that duty Thursday for his longtime friend and neighbor Adrian “Butch” Anderson, the sheriff in Dutchess County, N.Y., where Mr. Jones lives.

According to the Associated Press, Mr. Anderson’s fourth term as sheriff in the Hudson Valley county began with Mr. Jones administering the oath of office in place of a judge.

Mr. Jones told about 250 attendees at the ceremony in the town of Poughkeepsie that his many movie roles included playing a judge in “Sommersby,” a 1993 post-Civil War film that starred Richard Gere and Jodie Foster.

Mr. Jones also famously provided the voice for Darth Vader in the original “Star Wars” trilogy. His deep, distinctive voice also was featured in Disney’s animated film, “The Lion King.”

Lloyd Webber: Olympics will close London theaters

Andrew Lloyd Webber said London’s Olympic Games will force most of the capital’s theaters to close for the summer.

According to the Associated Press, Mr. Lloyd Webber said Friday the games will make it “very tough” for shows in London’s West End and predicted that three major musicals would not play over the games.

The composer told BBC radio that the biggest hits — such as his own “The Phantom of the Opera” — would play over the games, but that others would struggle to draw crowds.

He said advance bookings for West End shows were running at only 10 percent of their normal level.

Mr. Lloyd Webber’s Really Useful Group owns seven London theaters. Others in the industry have predicted a slump in demand over the summer.

Compiled from Web and wire service reports