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DRIVEWAYS OF RICH AND FAMOUS.

KIRK DOUGLAS told him off for raking through his dustbin and Liz Taylor gave him her own recipe for spicy chicken.

It's all in a day's work for John Cunningham, living proof that Americans will watch anything on TV provided it's about celebs.

John, 43, is the one-man team behind Driveways of the Rich and Famous, a low-budget, low-taste TV show that the US has taken to heart.

He has made a career out of turning up at stars' mansions, taking photos of their gates, and trying to get gossip out of gardeners, chauffeurs and anyone else around.

The more trivial the trivia, the better. John loved hearing how Kirk's dog likes to swim in his pool, and how George Burns gave his gardener a $100 tip to mark his 100th birthday.

The former legal secretary's "victims" include Sly Stallone, Marlon Brando, Robin Williams and Sir Anthony Hopkins. He even had a conversation with Madonna - she told him: "You're in my driveway."

John's programme goes out on lowly public access cable TV, but it and his website have earned him a cult following over the years.

He has turned down lots of offers to do the show - a take-off of US classic Lifestyles of the Rich and Famous - on one of the big networks.

John says he only does it out of love. But while he loves the stars, they don't all love him. Bette Midler's gardener chased him with a rake, and Baywatch's David Hasselhoff allegedly asked, "What the f*** are you doing on my property?" and reversed his Mercedes convertible rapidly in his general direction.

But his worst memory was coming face to face with Kirk Douglas as he searched his rubbish. The craggy-faced legend glared at him and asked: "Have you got enough?"

It's not all bad though. John recalled: "When I filmed Elizabeth Taylor's driveway, she wrote me a letter on powder-blue personalised stationery with her recipe for spicy chicken. She is a much better actress than she is a cook."

Find John's work on the net at www.driveways.com.

SYLVESTER STALLONE

A PINK archway might not be the first thing associated with macho man Sly but this is the entrance to his Hollywood home

MADONNA

THIS picture shows the gates where the former Material Girl turned maternal girl confronted driveway snooper John Cunningham

TONY HOPKINS

THE plain facade gives little away about the star of Silence of the Lambs

ROBIN WILLIAMS

IT'S over the top and oddball, just like its owner, the star of Mork and Mindy and numerous hit films

MARLON BRANDO

THE driveway protects one of the film world's most reclusive legends from the attentions of outsiders
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Article Details
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Author:Richardson, Pete
Publication:Daily Record (Glasgow, Scotland)
Date:May 26, 2000
Words:445
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