tue 15/06/2021

tv

Mystery Dance: On filming Elvis Costello

mark Kidel

Making a film about an artist with the phenomenal range and creative effervescence of someone like Elvis Costello was never going to be easy. There have been over 30 albums since he started out in 1977, hundreds of songs, many of which are as brilliant as anything written in the last 50 years, and a series of collaborations with artists including Paul McCartney, Burt Bacharach, Bill Frisell, Chet Baker, the Brodsky Quartet, Emmylou Harris, T-Bone Burnett and many others.

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Listed: Jane Austen provides

Jasper Rees

Right at the start of the boom around 20 years ago, a Hollywood mogul is said to have told one of his people to get some more work out of that Jane Austen. She seemed like a good source of romantic comedies. Regrettably for all, there were only ever six titles from this promising scriptwriter, and those have been done and done again by film and particularly television.

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David Frost, giant of the small screen, dies

Jasper Rees

David Frost, who has died at the age of 74, was a character. The obituaries will tour the entirety of his career as swinging young presenter of TW3, as the first transatlantic celebrity of the gogglebox who gave his name to a sugary brand of Kelloggs cereal, and as a lifelong thorn in the side of Peter Cook. Then there was Through the Keyhole and the TV-am cataclysm later followed by his Sunday morning resurrection on the BBC.

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The Culture Show at Edinburgh: Leonardo da Vinci - The Anatomist, BBC Two

Claudia Pritchard

When Leonardo da Vinci went for a job in Milan, he wrote ahead mentioning his bridge-building skills and then turned up at court with a lyre he had made in the shape of a horse’s skull. But had he finished compiling his illustrated treatise on the human body - said Alastair Sooke in this Edinburgh Culture Show special - it would have been as a scientist, rather than as an artist, that he would have been remembered for centuries.

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Channel 4 Launches Second Series of 'Top Boy'

Adam Sweeting

Originally there was never any plan to take Top Boy into a second series, but its arrival in autumn 2011 provoked such acclaim and enthusiasm (mixed with a bit of useful controversy) that Channel 4 could hardly help themselves from recommissioning it. It has partly been a phenomenon driven by social media, where fans have persistently discussed the show and demanded another series over the intervening two years.

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Listed: Sitcoms that became movies

James Williams

This week sees the release of the eagerly anticipated Alan Partridge film, Alpha Papa. And while there are those of us who simply cannot wait to cringe along with Norwich’s favourite talk radio host, there is a rather vocal minority that are indignant at having their favourite sitcom sullied by the limitations of the movie format.

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Listed: Female buddy crimebusters

theartsdesk

There's good cops and bad cops, hard cops and soft cops, old cops and young cops, funny cops and straight cops, maverick cops and by-the-book cops. The pairings are legion, the permutations endless. The movies teem with buddy cops, unlike paired with unlike to bring down bad guys. They've all pretty much got one thing in common: it's a guy thing. Yes, when it comes to reeling in the guilty parties, not a lot of sisters get to do it for themselves.

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Listed: Whistleblowers

Jasper Rees

Even now, as Edward Snowden floats in the diplomatic neverwhere of Sheremetyevo airport, someone somewhere is plotting the movie. Currently the story of the man who blew the whistle on the National Security Agency looks like it could still play out as farce, but it may yet turn to tragedy.

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James Gandolfini 1961-2013

Adam Sweeting

Mobster roles have helped define many of America's greatest screen actors, from James Cagney to Marlon Brando, Robert De Niro and Al Pacino. Thanks to his portrayal of Tony Soprano in HBO's TV masterpiece The Sopranos, James Gandolfini has made an unforgettable addition to their ranks.

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theartsdesk in Bradford: Bollywood Carmen Live

Jasper Rees

“My generation all were steeped in Bollywood.” Meera Syal, Wolverhampton born and bred, is recalling the cinematic influences of her youth. “It was our major link to India and was much more current than trying to make a phone call. You did feel that, though you were so far away, you were watching the same movies as your cousins.”

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