Arts and Entertainment For those who have argued, 'who would win in a fight, Superman or Batman?', Hollywood hopes to have an answer by 2015

Batman v Superman director Zach Snyder will have talks in the next few days with the man who first pitched the two superheroes against each other in an iconic comic book tale 30 years ago.

DVD: The Dark Knight (12)

Christian Bale returns as our hero, intent on cleaning up the mean streets of Gotham in the biggest-grossing film of the year.

Preview: Frightfest, Odeon West End, London

This year's Film4 FrightFest opens with the world premiere of the British "hoodie horror" Eden Lake, starring Kelly Reilly. It's one of 27 new horror films being shown over five days, including the French film Martyrs, about a young woman who goes on a killing spree, and the Japanese flick Tokyo Gore Police, an outlandish bloodbath directed by the special-effects guru Yoshihiro Nishimura.

The Dark Knight (12A)

Long gone are the camp portrayals of Batman and his various enemies – Heath Ledger's terrifying Joker is way too dark for the kids

The Dark Knight, Odeon, Leicester Square, London

Sadistic realism parallels our troubled times

The Dark Knight: the legacy of Heath Ledger

The Australian actor's death deprived Hollywood of one of its brightest young stars. But his performance as The Joker in the new Batman film suggests he was saving his best for last. David Usborne reports on an unlikely candidate for success at the Oscars

The Dark Knight of Ledger's soul

Heath Ledger — who died as the result of an accidental prescription drug cocktail in January — was something of a self-taught "method" actor, immersing himself in his roles. It was a habit he picked up from his Oscar-nominated break-through role as a gay cowboy in Brokeback Mountain, and an approach he continued through parts as diverse as a drug-addicted artist in Candy, the villainous Joker in The Dark Knight and even a circus performer in Doctor Parnassus.

Alex James: The Great Escape

I'd forgotten that moving to the country was such a gamble. When we left London three years ago, I really thought my life might be over. My band was disintegrating. I'd just stopped drinking and shagging so I could get married, and that shed a layer of boozy mates and girlfriends. My handful of close friends and favourite girlfriends could cope with my sobriety, but most of them never forgave me for getting married.

Jeremy Warner's Outlook: Actuaries put to shame as staying in equities saves BT pension scheme from catastrophe

Productivity: don't blame planning laws; Insider trading: an intractable problem

John Walsh: Tales of the City

'Is the Kremlin, that off-puttingly bleak and spiky fortress, really anyone's idea of something wonderful?'

Insomnia (15)

Edge of darkness

Guy Pearce: It's 800,000 years in the future and look who's here...

Guy Pearce, star of soap and screen, talks to James Mottram about life in 'The Time Machine'

Einstein memento returned

A piece of blackboard bearing Albert Einstein's signature is to be restored to pride of place at Manchester University, 35 years after it was dumped in a cellar.

Glossary: Let gravestones tell their stories

THE INDEPENDENT's offices are located next to a graveyard, the Nonconformist burial ground of Bunhill Fields, just outside the City of London boundaries. Bunyan, Defoe and Blake are buried here, alongside Isaac Watts, the composer of hymns, and a scattering of minor Cromwells.
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Homeless Veterans campaign: Donations hit record-breaking £1m target after £300,000 gift from Lloyds Bank

Homeless Veterans campaign

Donations hit record-breaking £1m target after huge gift from Lloyds Bank
Flight MH370 a year on: Lost without a trace – but the search goes on

Lost without a trace

But, a year on, the search continues for Flight MH370
Germany's spymasters left red-faced after thieves break into brand new secret service HQ and steal taps

Germany's spy HQ springs a leak

Thieves break into new €1.5bn complex... to steal taps
International Women's Day 2015: Celebrating the whirlwind wit of Simone de Beauvoir

Whirlwind wit of Simone de Beauvoir

Simone de Beauvoir's seminal feminist polemic, 'The Second Sex', has been published in short-form for International Women's Day
Mark Zuckerberg’s hiring policy might suit him – but it wouldn’t work for me

Mark Zuckerberg’s hiring policy might suit him – but it wouldn’t work for me

Why would I want to employ someone I’d be happy to have as my boss, asks Simon Kelner
Confessions of a planespotter: With three Britons under arrest in the UAE, the perils have never been more apparent

Confessions of a planespotter

With three Britons under arrest in the UAE, the perils have never been more apparent. Sam Masters explains the appeal
Russia's gulag museum 'makes no mention' of Stalin's atrocities

Russia's gulag museum

Ministry of Culture-run site 'makes no mention' of Stalin's atrocities
The big fresh food con: Alarming truth behind the chocolate muffin that won't decay

The big fresh food con

Joanna Blythman reveals the alarming truth behind the chocolate muffin that won't decay
Virginia Ironside was my landlady: What is it like to live with an agony aunt on call 24/7?

Virginia Ironside was my landlady

Tim Willis reveals what it's like to live with an agony aunt on call 24/7
Paris Fashion Week 2015: The wit and wisdom of Manish Arora's exercise in high camp

Paris Fashion Week 2015

The wit and wisdom of Manish Arora's exercise in high camp
8 best workout DVDs

8 best workout DVDs

If your 'New Year new you' regime hasn’t lasted beyond February, why not try working out from home?
Paul Scholes column: I don't believe Jonny Evans was spitting at Papiss Cissé. It was a reflex. But what the Newcastle striker did next was horrible

Paul Scholes column

I don't believe Evans was spitting at Cissé. It was a reflex. But what the Newcastle striker did next was horrible
Miguel Layun interview: From the Azteca to Vicarage Road with a million followers

From the Azteca to Vicarage Road with a million followers

Miguel Layun is a star in Mexico where he was criticised for leaving to join Watford. But he says he sees the bigger picture
Frank Warren column: Amir Khan ready to meet winner of Floyd Mayweather v Manny Pacquiao

Khan ready to meet winner of Mayweather v Pacquiao

The Bolton fighter is unlikely to take on Kell Brook with two superstar opponents on the horizon, says Frank Warren
War with Isis: Iraq's government fights to win back Tikrit from militants - but then what?

Baghdad fights to win back Tikrit from Isis – but then what?

Patrick Cockburn reports from Kirkuk on a conflict which sectarianism has made intractable