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Christie urged not to joke about Alzheimer's

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Christie urged not to joke about Alzheimer's

Rex Features

The US Alzheimer's Association has urged Julie Christie not to joke about the disease at Sunday's Oscars.

The 66-year-old is nominated for the Best Actress award for her portrayal of a woman suffering from the progressive illness in Away From Her.

However, she angered the organisation with a comment during her acceptance speech at last month's Screen Actors Guild Awards.

After thanking the film's cast and crew, she said: "If I've forgotten anybody, well, it's just that I'm still in character."

Mental health campaigners have called for sensitivity at the ceremony with both Away From Her and The Savages, which deals with dementia, nominated for awards.

Peter Braun of the Alzheimer's Association told the Los Angeles Times: "It is no laughing matter. People don't laugh about cancer, people don't laugh about AIDS.

"We call on the Academy to use this moment for good, as it has done for so many other social causes."

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