The South Bank Show: Final Cut, By Melvyn Bragg

"They've killed the show", moaned Melvyn Bragg when ITV brought down the kibosh on the arts programme that had become a revered institution over its 32-year (and 110-award) lifespan.

Here, Bragg brings it back to life with a readers version of his 25 "greatest hits" interviews, starting with its inception and the premise to blend high and low art for an unboundaried appreciation that would put Seamus Heaney on a par with Iggy Pop.

What follows are chapter-by-chapter gems; Paul McCartney on Eleanor Rigby (who was almost called Daisy McKenzie), Ingmar Bergman on how The Seventh Seal was made in 32 days, Francis Bacon on reality, fantasy and "voluptuous" male flesh, and so much more.