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Cate Blanchett

The Big Six: Welsh holiday cottages

There are two properties to choose from on Gesail, a working sheep farm near Dinas Mawddwy – a homely farmhouse or the swankier Front Barn that has been nominated for an architecture award. It is a vision of white walls, wooden floors and glitzy bathroom fittings. Surrounded by woodland, streams, waterfalls and wildlife, it is an escape for those who want access to unadulterated countryside as well as comfort.

David Fincher: "Awards are just icing on the cake"

There was a time when David Fincher's career threatened to derail. Following his 2002 home-invasion thriller Panic Room, he dropped out of skateboard film Lords of Dogtown and Tom Cruise vehicle Mission: Impossible III. He toyed with numerous other projects – including an adaptation of Arthur C Clarke's Rendezvous With Rama – but nothing came to fruition. "Making movies is hard," he shrugs. "It takes a long time." Already known for his Kubrick-like fastidiousness, Fincher seemed afraid to commit to anything less than the perfect project.