Arts and Entertainment Chiwetel Ejiofor (second from right) stars as kidnapped slave Solomon Northup in '12 Years A Slave'

The Steve McQueen film made £2.5m in its opening weekend

Emotional prisoner: Colin Firth in 'The Railway Man'

The Railway Man (15) - film review

Colin Firth gives one of his best performances in this muted but very touching adaptation of the autobiography of Eric Lomax, the former British army officer who was traumatised by what he endured in a Japanese prisoner of war camp.

A motorist navigates past a fallen tree after weather 'chaos' in north Antrim

Errors and Omissions: Plunged into chaos by journalistic exaggeration

The Independent's letters editor and chief pedant spots this week's best howlers

Jane Austen's best quotes

'Stupid men are the only ones worth knowing after all' and the best of her other quotes

Arifa Akbar: Forget the gruelling films, just read the brilliant books

There are times when the film-of-the-book leads us back to the original text, either to re-live the story or to compare the merits of one medium to the other. Then there are times when a film adaptation is so profoundly dissatisfying that it demands recourse to the book.

Between the Covers 27/10/2013

Your weekly guide to what's really going on in the world of books

The Week in Books: The benefits of GCSE literature go beyond just the classics

A lot of literary fists were shaken at Michael Gove this week for his plans not to include English literature in the five core subjects for the proposed baccalaureate. While the language part of English will remain compulsory, with all its form-filling functionality, literature will be an optional subject alongside French, wood-work, and the rest.

Judi Dench has revived her James Bond character M for an appeal against the decision to give Philomena an R rating

Judi Dench resurrects James Bond character M in appeal to change Philomena's R rating

The film's rating could put off older cinemagoers - its key audience

Between the Covers 03/11/2013

Your weekly guide to what's really going on in the world of books

Between the Covers 27/10/2013

Your weekly guide to what's really going on in the world of books

Between the Covers 20/10/2013

Your weekly guide to what's really going on in the world of books

Helen Fielding signs copies of her latest Bridget Jones novel at Foyles in central London

Bridget Jones: Mad About The Boy sells almost 50,000 copies in one day

Helen Fielding's comeback has proven incredibly lucrative

Between the Covers 11/10/2013

Your weekly guide to what's really going on in the world of books

Arts Diary: James Franco the acting polymath extends his oeuvre into novel territory with 'Actors Anonymous'; Fielding's bad news for Firth; Frieze Art Fair; Male nudes at Musee d'Orsay

James Franco – actor, artist, adept dabbler – has written a novel. Actors Anonymous is published on Tuesday and is billed as an “intense, wild ride into the dark heart of celebrity”. “Hollywood has always been a private club,” writes Franco. “I open the gates. I say welcome. I say, look inside.” He also writes, “I’m here to entertain you but I don’t really care about entertaining you.”

Helen Fielding, author

Page 3 Profile: Helen Fielding, author

Monday September 30: Weight: 130lbs (slight over-indulgence), alcohol units: 4 (very well-behaved), cigarettes: 10, calories: 2,560.

Renee Zellweger as Bridget Jones

Mr Darcy is dead: Bridget Jones returns as a single mother of two

Fifteen years since The Edge of Reason, shocking extracts from Helen Fielding's new book reveal she has killed off Mark Darcy in the intervening period

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Voices
Caustic she may be, but Joan Rivers is a feminist hero, whether she likes it or not
voicesShe's an inspiration, whether she likes it or not, says Ellen E Jones
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tvReview: Doctor Who Into the Dalek more than compensated for last week's nonsensical offering
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Diego Costa
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music... so how did she become country music's hottest new star?
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The spy mistress-general: A lecturer in nutritional therapy in her modern life, Heather Rosa favours a Byzantine look topped off with a squid and a schooner
fashionEurope's biggest steampunk convention heads to Lincoln
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Day In a Page

Burgundy, the River Rhone & Provence – MS Swiss Corona - seven nights from £999pp
Lake Maggiore, Orta and the Matterhorn – seven nights from £899pp
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The other Mugabe who is lining up for the Zimbabwean presidency

The other Mugabe who is lining up for the Zimbabwean presidency

Wife of President Robert Mugabe appears to have her sights set on succeeding her husband
The model of a gadget launch: Cultivate an atmosphere of mystery and excitement to sell stuff people didn't realise they needed

The model for a gadget launch

Cultivate an atmosphere of mystery and excitement to sell stuff people didn't realise they needed
Alice Roberts: She's done pretty well, for a boffin without a beard

She's done pretty well, for a boffin without a beard

Alice Roberts talks about her new book on evolution - and why her early TV work drew flak from (mostly male) colleagues
Get well soon, Joan Rivers - an inspiration, whether she likes it or not

Get well soon, Joan Rivers

She is awful. But she's also wonderful, not in spite of but because of the fact she's forever saying appalling things, argues Ellen E Jones
Doctor Who Into the Dalek review: A classic sci-fi adventure with all the spectacle of a blockbuster

A fresh take on an old foe

Doctor Who Into the Dalek more than compensated for last week's nonsensical offering
Fashion walks away from the celebrity runway show

Fashion walks away from the celebrity runway show

As the collections start, fashion editor Alexander Fury finds video and the internet are proving more attractive
Meet the stars of TV's Wolf Hall... and it's not the cast of the Tudor trilogy

Meet the stars of TV's Wolf Hall...

... and it's not the cast of the Tudor trilogy
Weekend at the Asylum: Europe's biggest steampunk convention heads to Lincoln

Europe's biggest steampunk convention

Jake Wallis Simons discovers how Victorian ray guns and the martial art of biscuit dunking are precisely what the 21st century needs
Don't swallow the tripe – a user's guide to weasel words

Don't swallow the tripe – a user's guide to weasel words

Lying is dangerous and unnecessary. A new book explains the strategies needed to avoid it. John Rentoul on the art of 'uncommunication'
Daddy, who was Richard Attenborough? Was the beloved thespian the last of the cross-generation stars?

Daddy, who was Richard Attenborough?

The atomisation of culture means that few of those we regard as stars are universally loved any more, says DJ Taylor
She's dark, sarcastic, and bashes life in Nowheresville ... so how did Kacey Musgraves become country music's hottest new star?

Kacey Musgraves: Nashville's hottest new star

The singer has two Grammys for her first album under her belt and her celebrity fans include Willie Nelson, Ryan Adams and Katy Perry
American soldier-poet Brian Turner reveals the enduring turmoil that inspired his memoir

Soldier-poet Brian Turner on his new memoir

James Kidd meets the prize-winning writer, whose new memoir takes him back to the bloody battles he fought in Iraq
Aston Villa vs Hull match preview: Villa were not surprised that Ron Vlaar was a World Cup star

Villa were not surprised that Vlaar was a World Cup star

Andi Weimann reveals just how good his Dutch teammate really is
Bill Granger recipes: Our chef ekes out his holiday in Italy with divine, simple salads

Bill Granger's simple Italian salads

Our chef presents his own version of Italian dishes, taking in the flavours and produce that inspired him while he was in the country
The Last Word: Tumbleweed through deserted stands and suites at Wembley

The Last Word: Tumbleweed through deserted stands and suites at Wembley

If supporters begin to close bank accounts, switch broadband suppliers or shun satellite sales, their voices will be heard. It’s time for revolution