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Probation revoked for Robert Downey Jr.

Robert Downey Jr October 17, 1997
Web posted at: 11:36 p.m. EDT (0336 GMT)

MALIBU, California (CNN) -- Actor Robert Downey Jr. has violated his probation by skipping a required drug-alcohol test, his publicist said.

Malibu Municipal Court Judge Lawrence Mira immediately revoked the actor's probation and ordered a hearing for December 8. However, the judge decided the "Chaplin" star could remain free to start work on his new film.

Downey, 32, was sentenced last November to three years' probation after pleading no contest to charges of possessing cocaine and heroin, carrying a concealed weapon, and driving under the influence of drugs.

He was also ordered to submit to periodic drug and alcohol tests.

At a status hearing Friday, Downey acknowledged that he had failed to take a required drug test, said his publicist, Alan Nierob. However, Nierob insisted the actor had been drug-free for a year and a half.

The actor, son of filmmaker Robert Downey, played a cocaine addict in the 1987 movie "Less Than Zero" and more recently starred in such films as "The Last Party," "Short Cuts" and "Only You." He was nominated for an Academy Award for his portrayal of legendary actor-director-producer in "Chaplin."

Downey was still scheduled to leave Saturday for Massachusetts to work on his next film, "Blue Visions," directed by Neil Jordan, whose earlier works include "The Crying Game," and "Michael Collins."

Reuters contributed to this report.

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