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Culture quiz: from Bob Holness 007 to the Daily Mail's feast of filth

Culture quiz: from Bob Holness 007 to the Daily Mail's feast of filth
Tests your arts knowledge with these questions from the Observer’s critics

Francis Ford Coppola was given his middle name in honour of who or what?

The Ford motor company

Michigan congressman Gerald Ford (later President Ford)

Film director John Ford

Which painter impressed a pope by drawing a perfect circle?

Michelangelo

Giotto

Leonardo da Vinci

Which TV anthology series did Lady Gaga join in 2015?

American Horror Story

True Detective

Unsolved

Which of the following did not happen to Brian De Palma?

He stole a motorbike and was shot in the leg following a police chase

He crashed a motorbike and lost one testicle and most of the skin from his buttock

As a child, he stalked his father with a camera, hoping to find proof of his infidelity

The Danish composer Carl Nielsen’s Symphony No 4 (1916) is also known as:

The Inexhaustible

The Indistinguishable

The Inextinguishable

The Bangladeshi film
See full article at The Guardian - TV News »

Peaky Blinders’ Helen McCrory Joins Hugh Laurie In ‘Roadkill’ As PBS Masterpiece Boards BBC Political Drama

Peaky Blinders’ Helen McCrory Joins Hugh Laurie In ‘Roadkill’ As PBS Masterpiece Boards BBC Political Drama
Peaky Blinders’ Helen McCrory is to play the British Prime Minister alongside Hugh Laurie in British drama Roadkill as PBS Masterpiece boards the four-part BBC series.

McCrory will be joined by Westworld’s Sidse Babett Knudsen and Dublin Murders’ Sarah Greene in the series, which is written by Collaterel’s David Hare and produced by National Treasure producer The Forge.

The cast is rounded out by Saskia Reeves (The Child in Time), Patricia Hodge (A Very English Scandal), Ophelia Lovibond (Hooten & the Lady), Iain De Caestecker (Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D), Katie Leung (Chimerica), Olivia Vinall (The Woman in White), Pippa Bennett-Warner (Harlots) Shalom Brune-Franklin (Our Girl), Pip Torrens (Preacher), Millie Brady (The Last Kingdom) and Danny Ashok (Deep Water).

The thriller is about self-made, forceful and charismatic politician Peter Laurence (Laurie). Peter’s public and private life seems to be falling apart – or rather is
See full article at Deadline »

PBS Masterpiece Boards Hugh Laurie, Helen McCrory Political Thriller ‘Roadkill’

Britain is getting a new prime minister – on TV, at least, after “Peaky Blinders” star Helen McCrory signed on to play the part in the BBC political thriller “Roadkill.” PBS Masterpiece has boarded the series and will co-produce and launch it in the U.S. Masterpiece’s Rebecca Eaton will exec produce the project.

McCrory joins the previously cast Hugh Laurie who plays one of her ministers, in the series. David Hare (“Collateral”) is writing. It is being made by The Forge, the All3Media-backed producer of “National Treasure.”

All3Media International is handling distribution and struck the PBS deal, its latest with the U.S. broadcaster and hot on the heels of an agreement for European cop series “Van Der Valk.”

McCrory and Laurie will play Conservative Party politicians clinging to power in “Roadkill.” Other cast announced, Friday, include Sidse Babett Knudsen (“Westworld”), Saskia Reeves (“The Child in Time”), Sarah Greene
See full article at Variety »

‘Big Bang’s Mayim Bialik & Jim Parsons Reteam For Fox Comedy Series ‘Carla’ Based On UK’s ‘Miranda’

‘Big Bang’s Mayim Bialik & Jim Parsons Reteam For Fox Comedy Series ‘Carla’ Based On UK’s ‘Miranda’
Shamy is back! The Big Bang Theory stars Jim Parsons and Mayim Bialik, who played adorably nerdy couple Sheldon and Amy on the it CBS sitcom, have partnered for Carla, a new multi-camera comedy from Big Bang studio Warner Bros. TV based on Miranda Hart’s BBC series Miranda.

In a highly competitive situation, with all broadcast networks bidding, the project, starring and executive produced by Bialik and executive produced by Parsons, just landed at Fox with a series order for fall 2020. The network’s willingness to step up in a big way erases any doubt about its commitment to live-action comedy under CEO Charlie Collier and Entertainment President Michael Thorn.

On the show, written by Darlene Hunt, Carla (Bialik) is a 39-year-old woman who struggles every day against society and her mother to prove that you Cannot have everything you want — and still be happy. Which is why she
See full article at Deadline »

‘The Crown’ Adds ‘X-Files’ Star Gillian Anderson as Margaret Thatcher

‘The Crown’ Adds ‘X-Files’ Star Gillian Anderson as Margaret Thatcher
Gillian Anderson has joined the cast of Season 4’s “The Crown,” with “The X-Files” star set to play former British prime minister Margaret Thatcher, the show announced Saturday morning.

Production is now underway on the fourth season, even ahead of the Season 3 premiere on Netflix on Nov. 17. In a statement posted along with the announcement to twitter, Anderson was not shy in addressing just how “controversial” of a figure Thatcher was in British politics.

“I am so excited to be joining the cast and crew of ‘The Crown’ and to have the opportunity to portray such a complicated and controversial woman,” Anderson said in a statement. “Thatcher was undoubtedly formidable but I am relishing exploring beneath the surface and, dare I say, falling in love with the icon who, whether loved or despised, defined an era.”

Also Read: Olivia Colman on Replacing Claire Foy in 'The Crown': 'I've
See full article at The Wrap »

Susan Calman: ‘When was I happiest? Dancing with Kevin Clifton on Strictly’

The comedian and writer on her fear of flying, Adrian Mole and sniffing her cats’ paws

Born in Glasgow, Susan Calman, 44, was a lawyer before becoming a standup in 2006. She was in the Channel 4 sketch show, Blowout, which won a Scottish Bafta in 2007, and went on to become a regular on TV and radio panel shows. She has appeared in Fresh Meat, presented Armchair Detectives and hosts the BBC podcast Mrs Brightside. In 2016, she wrote a book, Cheer Up Love, about depression. Her self-help book Sunny Side Up: A Story Of Kindness And Joy was published in September. She is married and lives in Glasgow.

When were you happiest?

Genuinely – and my wife, Lee, knows this – dancing with Kevin Clifton on Strictly.

Related: Patricia Hodge: ‘I wish I could say sorry to my husband’
See full article at The Guardian - TV News »

Surviving Christmas with the Relatives Premiere Interviews: Gemma Whelan, Joely Richardson & more

For a slice of festive family fun there’s no better time than a Family Christmas Movie. This year, along with your Scrooged, Muppets Christmas Carol and Elf, a new comedy is trying its luck for a place under the Christmas Tree. Surviving Christmas with the Relatives came to the capital yesterday evening for its premiere and stars Gemma Whelan, Michael Landes, Patricia Hodge and Ronni Ancona walked the red carpet along with writer/director James Dearden.

The film also stars Joely Richardson, Julian Ovenden, Sally Phillips, James Fox, Sophie Simnett from Disney’s The Lodge and Jonas Moore.

With George R. R. Martin’s HBO series coming to an end Whelan talked about the fact that she knows the ending of the whole series, and how good it is that it’s coming to an end. The cast talked about their own Christmases fed into the chaos of the film.
See full article at HeyUGuys »

Festive comedy Surviving Christmas with the Relatives gets a trailer, poster and images

Ahead of its UK release next month, a poster, trailer and images have arrived online for the upcoming festive comedy Surviving Christmas with the Relatives which stars Julian Ovenden, Gemma Whalen, Joely Richardson, Michael Landes, Sally Phillips, Ronni Ancona, Sophie Simnett, Patricia Hodge, and James Fox; take a look here…

Surviving Christmas with the Relatives is a heart-warming, riotous take on the traditional festive family get-together, as disparate relatives are thrown together in a confined space for a 3-day ordeal. The film sees two sisters and their families come together in their recently deceased parents’ falling down country house, with chaotic consequences. Miranda (Gemma Whelan) and Dan (Julian Ovenden) are refugees from city life trying to set up a small holding with their kids in tow, and Lila (Joely Richardson) is a fading Hollywood star married to her alcoholic agent, Trent (Michael Landes). Ancient sibling rivalries flare up again to
See full article at Flickeringmyth »

Patricia Hodge: ‘I wish I could say sorry to my husband’

The actor on dementia, red hair and the importance of manners

Born in Lincolnshire, Patricia Hodge, 71, trained as a teacher before studying at Lamda. Her television credits include Rumpole Of The Bailey, Miranda and Downton Abbey. In 2000, she won an Olivier award for her performance in Money at the National Theatre. She is currently starring in the 20th anniversary revival of Michael Frayn’s Copenhagen at Chichester Festival theatre. She is widowed, has two sons and lives in London and Devon.

When were you happiest?

In the minutes, hours, days and weeks after having my children. I was 42 and 45. There’s nothing like new life.

Related: Ian McEwan: ‘I despise lying, ideological Brexiters’
See full article at The Guardian - TV News »

TV Review: ‘A Very English Scandal’

TV Review: ‘A Very English Scandal’
“We are nothing but a pair of old queens,” Hugh Grant tells his dining companion in the House of Commons near the start of Amazon’s new limited series “A Very English Scandal.” The frankness is startling given what we know about Grant, the leading man in any number of straight romantic comedies. And it comes to seem yet more striking as Grant’s character, the real-life member of Parliament Jeremy Thorpe, obfuscates endlessly about his desire through the series’s three-hour running time. He’s rarely ever open about desire, treating it as an embarrassing biological fact to be sated on brief hiatuses from heterosexual life.

The series, which first aired overseas on BBC One in May and comes to Amazon June 29, comes by its title honestly. U.K. talent (including director Stephen Frears and stars Grant and Ben Whishaw) suffuse the proceedings with a curious reticence, an enigmatic
See full article at Variety »

‘A Very English Scandal’ Trailer: A Violin-Playing Hugh Grant Purrs To Ben Whishaw In BBC & Amazon Drama

‘A Very English Scandal’ Trailer: A Violin-Playing Hugh Grant Purrs To Ben Whishaw In BBC & Amazon Drama
A topless Ben Whishaw and a violin-playing Hugh Grant star in the first trailer for BBC One and Amazon drama A Very English Scandal.

The broadcasters have released the first extended look at the Blueprint Television-produced three-parter, which tells the story of disgraced British politician Jeremy Thorpe, who was tried, but acquitted, of conspiring to murder his ex-lover, Norman Scott.

Grant stars as Thorpe and Ben Whishaw plays Scott. In the trailer, Scott claims he was a “victim”, while Grant’s character purrs “my little bunny” at the young man.

The drama is directed by Oscar nominee and BAFTA winner Stephen Frears and written by BAFTA winner Russel T Davies. Executive producers are Dominic Treadwell-Collins, Graham Broadbent and Pete Czernin for Sony-backed Blueprint Television and Lucy Richer for the BBC.

Rounding out the key cast are Alex Jennings, Patricia Hodge (Miranda), Monica Dolan (Appropriate Adult), Adrian Scarborough, Jason Watkins (The Lost Honour Of Christopher Jefferies), Eve Myles (Victoria), Michele Dotrice (Starfish) and Blake Harrison (The Inbetweeners).

“I can’t believe they can say this on the BBC,” says one of Scott’s relatives. Believe it, it’s airing soon.
See full article at Deadline »

Julian Ovenden, Gemma Whelan, Joely Richardson board 'Surviving Christmas'

Julian Ovenden, Gemma Whelan, Joely Richardson board 'Surviving Christmas'
Principle photography is underway on James Dearden’s festive pic.

Studio Soho’s family Christmas feature Surviving Christmas is now shooting with Julian Ovenden (Downton Abbey), Gemma Whelan (Game Of Thrones), Joely Richardson (101 Dalmations) and Michael Landes (Burlesque) all on board.

Sally Phillips (I’m Alan Partridge), Ronni Ancona (The Big Impression), Patricia Hodge (The Elephant Man) and James Fox (Thoroughly Modern Millie) round out the cast.

Principle photography on the festive feature commenced on April 3 in Hertfordshire, with the shoot later moving to London.

The film is written and directed by James Dearden (Oscar-nominated for best adapted screenplay for
See full article at ScreenDaily »

‘The Naked Civil Servant’ Blu-ray Review

Stars: John Hurt, Liz Gebhardt, Patricia Hodge, Stanley Lebor, Katherine Schofield, Colin Higgins, John Rhys-Davies, Stephen Johnstone, Antonia Pemberton | Written by Quentin Crisp, Philip Mackie | Directed by Jack Gold

When John Hurt died we lost a true legend of film, and an actor loved by both young and old. Some knew him for his role as Kane in Alien, John Merrick in The Elephant Man, and even Doctor Who. Perhaps his most daring role though was as Quentin Crisp, The Naked Civil Servant.

The Naked Civil Servant is the story of Quentin Crisp, a shamelessly (and famously) homosexual man who was never afraid to be himself, even at a time when it was illegal. Looking at his coming of age and growth into old age the film celebrates the life of a truly inspirational individual.

Quentin Crisp is anything but shy, you get to see this in The Naked Civil Servant
See full article at Nerdly »

Downton Abbey Series Finale Plot Revealed: Expect 'Love' and 'Loss'

Downton Abbey Series Finale Plot Revealed: Expect 'Love' and 'Loss'
With Downton Abbey‘s series finale set to air across the pond in less than six weeks, Masterpiece is revealing new details about the 90-minute swan song.

The sendoff, which will air in the U.S. on March 6 (9/8c, PBS), offers “all the love and loss, happiness and heartbreak of Downton Abbey, and, as the family and servants prepare to welcome 1926, they celebrate an unforgettable New Year.s Eve together at the great house,” per the official logline.

Production spent a week at Alnwick Castle in Northumberland, which doubled as the location for Brancaster, the setting of last season.’s
See full article at TVLine.com »

Downton Abbey Series Finale Details Revealed: Who's Back and What to Expect

Downton Abbey Series Finale Details Revealed: Who's Back and What to Expect
This is it, Downton Abbey fans. The final episode ever of Downton Abbey is set to air in the United States on Sunday, March 6 and Carnival Films and Masterpiece have finally revealed the guest stars and details of the TV event. Lily James and Matt Barber return as Lady Rose and Attics Aldrige, as does Peter Egan as Shrimpie, Lady Rose's father. Patricia Hodge also guests as Bertie Pelham's mother in the final episode. The series finale is airing on Christmas in the United Kingdom. "The last ever episode offers all the love and loss, happiness and heartbreak of Downton Abbey, and as the family and servants prepare to welcome 1926, they celebrate an unforgettable New Year's Eve together at the great...
See full article at E! Online »

‘Downton Abbey’ Christmas Special Casts Bertie’s Mom, Brings Back Prior Stars

‘Downton Abbey’ Christmas Special Casts Bertie’s Mom, Brings Back Prior Stars
Merry Christmas, “Downton Abbey” fans: The concluding British drama is bringing back several guest stars for its last-ever episode. The upstairs/downstairs show has also cast Patricia Hodge as Bertie’s mother. Lily James, Matt Barber and Peter Egan will return to say goodbye, along with the rest of the regular cast. The last-ever episode will see the family and its servants ringing in 1926. The final season will premiere in the U.S. on Sunday, Jan. 3, culminating with the series finale on March 6. “Downton” Abbey has always ended its seasonal runs with a Christmas special. Overseas, the show hit a two-year ratings.
See full article at The Wrap »

Jamie Dornan, Miranda Hart and Boy George go wild for a special edition of Gogglebox: Funniest Nsfw moments

Gogglebox is pretty epic on a normal night, but throw in some celebrities with our usual favourites and you've got one crazy Nsfw TV show.

In aid of Channel 4's Stand Up To Cancer telethon, that's exactly what we had tonight (October 9) and Twitter was quick to explode with happiness at the presence of one particular celebrity:

1. It's Mr Christian Grey himself - Jamie Dornan. And he isn't keen on Strictly:

Jamie Dornan and Nick Frost on a couch together. Have my dreams come true? lol #Gogglebox #goggleboxcelebrity#su2c

— Samantha Walford (@SammWalford) October 9, 2015

Jamie Dornan on Gogglebox? Yes please

— Louisa. (@xx_Louisa_xx) October 9, 2015

2. Dornan was paired with Nick Frost, prompting some concern for Frost's usual comedy partner Simon Pegg:

Cats are up to something, clearly, but Jamie Dornan is on to them... Celebrity #Gogglebox, 9pm.

https://t.co/8ZNiIoYcQM

Channel 4 (@Channel4) October 9, 2015

Would love
See full article at Digital Spy - TV news »

Jamie Dornan, Miranda Hart, Nick Frost and Lee Mack join Celebrity Gogglebox

Jamie Dornan and Miranda Hart are among the latest stars announced for Friday's Gogglebox episode.

The actors will be joined on Channel 4's Stand Up to Cancer special by Nick Frost and Lee Mack.

Hart is taking to the sofa with on-screen mother Patricia Hodge - Penny in BBC sitcom Miranda - as well as her real mum Diana.

Meanwhile, Mack will be accompanied by comedian Bobby Ball.

Boy George, Geri Halliwell and Marilyn were previously confirmed for the special edition.

Kate Moss, Noel Gallagher and Naomi Campbell were among the famous faces who popped up in last year's corresponding Gogglebox.

Channel 4 also revealed that Alexandra Burke and Anthea Turner will be looking for love in Celebrity First Dates.

In 2014, Stand Up to Cancer's live event - hosted by Davina McCall, Alan Carr and Dr Christian Jessen - raised more than £14 million for Cancer Research UK.
See full article at Digital Spy - TV news »

6 spoiler-free teasers for Downton Abbey's series 6 premiere

And now, the end is near for Downton Abbey as it prepares to enter its final series on ITV.

Before we enjoy one last autumn of cosy Sunday nights with the Downton theme blaring through our tellys, Digital Spy was treated to a special screening of the first episode of series six, and here are a few spoiler-free teasers to get you excited.

1. The times they are still-a-changing

As Downton enters 1925, Robert ponders whether their way of living is far too out of date with the rest of the world (well, duh).

After seeing a familiar face hit with a financial crisis, there may be talk of downsizing the staff at Downton, a notion that concerns everyone from Thomas to Spratt. Is Downton preparing to shut up shop and force the Crawleys to fend for themselves?

2. Maggie Smith's one liners are in fine form

You'll be happy to hear
See full article at Digital Spy - TV news »

Here's your first look at the final series of Downton Abbey

ITV has given fans a first glimpse at the final series of Downton Abbey.

Eight new promotional pictures have been unveiled ahead of the period drama's return this autumn.

Maggie Smith's Dowager Countess looks like she's in deep thought as she sits in her bedroom, while the ladies of the Crawley family - Mary, Cora and Edith - are pictured together.

Earlier this week, the cast of ITV's beloved series, including former star Dan Stevens, reunited for a special BAFTA tribute night to mark the end of the show.

Speaking at the event, creator Julian Fellowes hinted that there may be more to come from Downton Abbey and its characters following its farewell series.

There have been rumours of a Downton Abbey movie ever since ITV confirmed that series six would be the last, but executive producer Gareth Neame has claimed that there are no immediate plans to take
See full article at Digital Spy - TV news »
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