Simon Usborne

Simon Usborne is a features writer at The Independent and i.

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Director Paul Thomas Anderson (right) and his movie The Master featuring Joaquin Phoenix

Star Wars Episode 7 is being shot on film - and now Kodak is launching a last-ditch bid to keep celluloid alive

Bob Weinstein is among the Hollywood suits who have been working with Kodak to commit to long-term orders for film. Simon Usborne wonders what all the fuss is about

The shipping news: a typical Snoozebox construction

Shipping container hotels: Pop-up hotels filling a niche

Spending the night in a shipping container doesn't sound appealing, but these mobile crash pads are popping up at the summer's biggest events, discovers Simon Usborne
Shake down: Michelle and Barack Obama bump knuckles before an election night rally in Minnesota in 2008, the 'Washington Post' called it 'the fist bump heard round the world'

Will fist bumps replace the handshake?

Fist bumps are officially the most hygienic way of saying hello, but where did this greeting originate? Simon Usborne knuckles down
Nudists take part in the annual North East Skinny Dip as the sun rises at Druridge Bay in Northumberland

Naturism criminalised: Why not being able to bare all is a bummer

I long for a society in which it is socially acceptable to bathe in the buff

Simon Usborne: Cycling is still oiling the wheels of women's liberation more than 100 years on

The way cycling has oiled the wheels of women's liberation in this country and in the US is well documented (go dig out that quote by Susan B Anthony, the American suffragette). Less so is the way it is still doing so elsewhere more than 100 years later.

Julian Assange working out with Eric Cantona

Eric Cantona, Lady Gaga, and now Pamela Anderson: The famous faces visiting Julian Assange at his embassy lock-in

He may have lost a bid to have his arrest warrant cancelled but at least Julian Assange won't be lonely, says Simon Usborne

Stan Brock: the British cowboy turned movie star who rescued millions of uninsured Americans

The British-born Amazonian cowboy gave it all up to devote his life to providing free healthcare for millions of uninsured Americans.  Simon Usborne hears his extraordinary story

Simon Usborne: The more you watch pro cycling, the more you understand its social complexity

The joy of pro cycling is the way it rewards the viewer: the more you watch, the more you get it. Most intriguingly, you begin to understand its social complexity. In 2006, Fortune magazine offered a metaphor its readers could understand: "A stage race is less a sporting event than a commodities exchange on wheels. What appears to be a random mass of bicycles is really an orderly, complex web of shifting alliances, crossed with brutal competition, designed to keep or acquire the market's most valued currency: energy."

NetApp-Endura’s Jan Barta rides in Jean-Marc Bideau’s slipstream during a breakaway on stage three of the Tour de France

Tour de France 2014: How Tour’s underdogs Endura day on the road

Simon Usborne hitches a lift in the NetApp-Endura car as the wild cards’ rider Jan Barta makes a break for London

Gay icons: Sesame Street's Bert (right) and Ernie

Are Bert and Ernie really a gay couple?

After a Christian bakery refused to make a gay wedding cake with their faces on, Simon Usbourne asks if the muppet friends are gay
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General Election 2015: Chuka Umunna on the benefits of immigration, humility – and his leader Ed Miliband

Chuka Umunna: A virus of racism runs through Ukip

The shadow business secretary on the benefits of immigration, humility – and his leader Ed Miliband
Yemen crisis: This exotic war will soon become Europe's problem

Yemen's exotic war will soon affect Europe

Terrorism and boatloads of desperate migrants will be the outcome of the Saudi air campaign, says Patrick Cockburn
Marginal Streets project aims to document voters in the run-up to the General Election

Marginal Streets project documents voters

Independent photographers Joseph Fox and Orlando Gili are uploading two portraits of constituents to their website for each day of the campaign
Game of Thrones: Visit the real-life kingdom of Westeros to see where violent history ends and telly tourism begins

The real-life kingdom of Westeros

Is there something a little uncomfortable about Game of Thrones shooting in Northern Ireland?
How to survive a social-media mauling, by the tough women of Twitter

How to survive a Twitter mauling

Mary Beard, Caroline Criado-Perez, Louise Mensch, Bunny La Roche and Courtney Barrasford reveal how to trounce the trolls
Gallipoli centenary: At dawn, the young remember the young who perished in one of the First World War's bloodiest battles

At dawn, the young remember the young

A century ago, soldiers of the Empire – many no more than boys – spilt on to Gallipoli’s beaches. On this 100th Anzac Day, there are personal, poetic tributes to their sacrifice
Dissent is slowly building against the billions spent on presidential campaigns – even among politicians themselves

Follow the money as never before

Dissent is slowly building against the billions spent on presidential campaigns – even among politicians themselves, reports Rupert Cornwell
Samuel West interview: The actor and director on austerity, unionisation, and not mentioning his famous parents

Samuel West interview

The actor and director on austerity, unionisation, and not mentioning his famous parents
General Election 2015: Imagine if the leading political parties were fashion labels

Imagine if the leading political parties were fashion labels

Fashion editor, Alexander Fury, on what the leaders' appearances tell us about them
Phumzile Mlambo-Ngcuka: Home can be the unsafest place for women

Phumzile Mlambo-Ngcuka: Home can be the unsafest place for women

The architect of the HeForShe movement and head of UN Women on the world's failure to combat domestic violence
Public relations as 'art'? Surely not

Confessions of a former PR man

The 'art' of public relations is being celebrated by the V&A museum, triggering some happy memories for DJ Taylor
Bill Granger recipes: Our chef succumbs to his sugar cravings with super-luxurious sweet treats

Bill Granger's luxurious sweet treats

Our chef loves to stop for 30 minutes to catch up on the day's gossip, while nibbling on something sweet
London Marathon 2015: Paula Radcliffe and the mother of all goodbyes

The mother of all goodbyes

Paula Radcliffe's farewell to the London Marathon will be a family affair
Everton vs Manchester United: Steven Naismith demands 'better' if Toffees are to upset the odds against United

Steven Naismith: 'We know we must do better'

The Everton forward explains the reasons behind club's decline this season
Arsenal vs Chelsea: Praise to Arsene Wenger for having the courage of his convictions

Michael Calvin's Last Word

Praise to Wenger for having the courage of his convictions