Kirk Douglas is alive and kicking, despite obituary

LOS ANGELES - Kirk Douglas said he is very much alive despite People magazine publishing an obituary of him on its website on Sunday.

The veteran actor told USA Today on Monday: "The announcement of my death is premature. I'm looking forward to turning 98 next week."

In an apparent accident, People posted the pre-written obituary under the headline, "DO NOT PUB Kirk Douglas Dies".

"Kirk Douglas, one of the few genuine box-office names to emerge just as TV was overtaking American culture in the years right after World War II, died TK TK TK. He was 97 (DOB 12/9/1916) and had been in good health despite having suffered a debilitating 1996 stroke that rendered his speech difficult," it read, with "TK" meaning copy to come.

It also contained details of his life and accomplishments, photographs and a video clip of him in a movie.

The Hollywood Reporter said it was unclear if the tribute, which had a date stamp of Sept 29, had been online for two months.

People has since removed the tribute, but not before it sparked reactions on Twitter.

"Is People Magazine going to keep the Kirk Douglas obituary online till he eventually dies?", one user wrote, having fun with the apparent boo-boo.

Far from dead, Douglas was due to release a work of poetry and stories of his life in time for his birthday.

Life Could Be Verse will be out today, USA Today reported.

He has been working to regain his speech after his stroke, and has also been writing books, the newspaper wrote.