Arts and Entertainment

The singer was forced to pull out of a string of performances after being diagnosed with appendicitis

Director's block? Dial H for Hitchcock

ALFRED HITCHCOCK himself was sanguine about the reverence his films were held in. He once said that even his failures made money "and became classics a year after I made them". But he might have raised an eyebrow at the sudden flurry of Hollywood directors going back to the master's work and copying it.

Words: doozie, n.

STEPHEN SONDHEIM'S mother was described by one relation, Myra Berzoff, as a "doozie", which the Random House Dictionary of American Slang terms a splendid creature. This was apparently inspired by the actress Eleonora Duse.

Fashion: Amazing drapes

Her clothes were before their time - and timeless. John Windsor on Madame Gres, born in 1903 and one of the century's greatest designers

Get a grip

There's nothing like signalling your rage in reindeer-skin gloves: IS IT WORTH IT? Driving gloves Connolly pounds 105

Caution: Small minds on big screen

Just what David Thomson needs: another top 100 films poll. And it's not even as if the list-makers ever get it right

No better than she should be

Is it worth it? The Golden Anniversary Barbie: pounds 299 for number 19,788 of a limited edition. Not that limited, then...

Why are they famous? Prince Albert of Monaco

MAIN CLAIM: Male scion of the most glammy, hammy, tragedy-blasted mini-monarchy the world has yet to invent - the living, weeping incarnation of a collaboration between Paris Match, Hello! and Knots Landing in a Cote d'Azur made-for-television special. Namely, Albert is the boy Grimaldi, thus the only dynastically important one, and sadly the only celebritocratically boring one. However, his Highness has just turned 40, and is hinting at future mini-series wedding bells. "I must start thinking about founding a family. I am gradually reaching the critical point," he says.

The Agreeable World of Wallace Arnold: The long and troubled decline of my friends in Monaco

It was my old chum Lord Deedes who told me the words of wisdom that have remained in my head for many decades. "You know, Wallace," he intoned thoughtfully while looking at the sky one day, "our old gamekeeper always used to say to me, 'It never rains'."

We are not all part of this

`I didn't know her - I can't mourn for someone I did not know'

Diana 1961-1997: The icon - The problem who wouldn't go quietly and die d as a result of her fame

The untimely death of Diana, Princess of Wales, lifts her to the status of other icons such as John F Kennedy, Marilyn Monroe and James Dean whose immortality was assured by the tragic circumstances of their deaths.

Television: Bliss was it in that Dawn to be alive

My Friend Gerry used to say that he'd stop a speeding bullet for Grace Kelly. Every time Rear Window was shown on the telly, Gerry used to shout at James Stewart, incredulous that the man should spend so much time scrutinising his neighbours, when such adorable fruit as Grace was there, available for the, er, plucking.

UNDER THE COUNTER

We really can't cope with it - this heat. If we were Italian we'd be cursing to work on our Vespas, in our little Max Mara linen suits and our Web shades, and he'd be cool. In Britain, people just seem to sweat - certainly the ones I've been pressed up against in the tube do. I stood next to one corpulent woman who was wearing black 70 denier tights and a dark suit - it was eighty in the shade - what was she thinking of? Everywhere you go there is an all-pervading smell of BO. I need air.

Glove me do

It's a great shame that driving gloves are no longer used very much, because they look so chic. Although you will have to risk being dubbed a poseur if you wear a pair today, it's worth the risk, especially if you drive a convertible, because they are really very, bloody cool. Grace Kelly wore a pair to great effect in the recent TV showing of To Catch A Thief, when she drove Cary Grant around the south of France. The original point of driving gloves is not clear - maybe steering wheels used to be very slippy in the old days, or maybe it was due to the lack of heating in cars - whatever. They can only be a good thing and bring down road rage. AB

Television preview: Recommended viewing this weekend

Travels with Pevsner Sat 6.15pm BBC2 The Goldring Audit Sat 8pm C4 Performance: Richard II Sat 10.15pm BBC2 Midsomer Murders Sun 8pm ITV The Knowledge Sun 9.20pm BBC2

Why are they famous? Prince Ernst of Hanover

Main Claim: Let's face it, there are European royals and there are European royals. Some of them are whey faced Scandi/ Bavarian-type nobodies with chubby offspring and silly names. Others are glittering superstars dwelling in sugar-spun gambling havens, rotten with soapish fame, looks, tragedy and sex scandals. Prince Ernst of Hanover (polite "Who?") has been seen knocking around with the Riviera's resident supernova, Princess Caroline of Monaco. Hence, we've heard of Prince Ernst of Hanover all of a sudden.
News
Young Winstone: His ‘tough-guy’ image is a misconception
people
News
David Ryall in Harry Potter
people
Arts and Entertainment
Man of action: Christian Bale stars in Exodus: Gods and Kings
film
Sport
Adnan Januzaj and Gareth Bale
footballManchester United set to loan out Januzaj to make room for Bale - if a move for the Welshman firms up
Sport
Wayne Rooney warms up ahead of the English Premier League football match between Tottenham Hotspur and Manchester United at White Hart Lane
football
Arts and Entertainment
Peter Mayhew as Chewbacca alongside Harrison Ford's Han Solo in 'Star Wars'
film
Arts and Entertainment
British actor Idris Elba is also a DJ and rapper who played Ibiza last summer
filmIdris Elba responds to James Bond rumours on Twitter
News
Hackers revealed Oscar-winning actress Lawrence was paid less than her male co-stars in American Hustle
people
Arts and Entertainment
Ellie Levenson’s The Election book demystifies politics for children
bookNew children's book primes the next generation for politics
News
Outspoken: Alexander Fury, John Rentoul, Ellen E Jones and Katy Guest
newsFrom the Scottish referendum to the Ice Bucket Challenge, our writers voice their opinions
Career Services

Day In a Page

Independent Travel
Burgundy, the River Rhone & Provence – Five-star MS Swiss Corona 7 nights from £999pp
Lake Como St Moritz & the Bernina Express 7 nights from £809pp
Vietnam
Lake Maggiore, Orta & the Matterhorn 7 nights from £939pp
South Africa
Spain
Prices correct as of 19 December 2014
War with Isis: The West needs more than a White Knight

The West needs more than a White Knight

Despite billions spent on weapons, the US has not been able to counter Isis's gruesome tactics, says Patrick Cockburn
Return to Helmand: Private Davey Graham recalls the day he was shot by the Taliban

'The day I was shot by the Taliban'

Private Davey Graham was shot five times during an ambush in 2007 - it was the first, controversial photograph to show the dangers our soldiers faced in Helmand province
Revealed: the best and worst airlines for delays

Revealed: the best and worst airlines for delays

Many flyers are failing to claim compensation to which they are entitled, a new survey has found
The stories that defined 2014: From the Scottish independence referendum to the Ice Bucket Challenge, our writers voice their opinions

The stories that defined 2014

From the Scottish independence referendum to the Ice Bucket Challenge, our writers voice their opinions
Stoke-on-Trent becomes first British city to be classified as 'disaster resilient' by the United Nations

Disaster looming? Now you know where to head...

Which British city has become the first to be awarded special 'resilience' status by the UN?
Finally, a diet that works: Californian pastor's wildly popular Daniel Plan has seen his congregation greatly reduced

Finally, a diet that works

Californian pastor's wildly popular Daniel Plan has seen his congregation greatly reduced
Say it with... lyrics: The power of song was never greater, according to our internet searches

Say it with... lyrics

The power of song was never greater, according to our internet searches
Professor Danielle George: On a mission to bring back the art of 'thinkering'

The joys of 'thinkering'

Professor Danielle George on why we have to nurture tomorrow's scientists today
Monique Roffey: The author on father figures, the nation's narcissism and New Year reflections

Monique Roffey interview

The author on father figures, the nation's narcissism and New Year reflections
Introducing my anti-heroes of 2014

Introducing my anti-heroes of 2014

Their outrageousness and originality makes the world a bit more interesting, says Ellen E Jones
DJ Taylor: Good taste? It's all a matter of timing...

Good taste? It's all a matter of timing...

It has been hard to form generally accepted cultural standards since the middle of the 19th century – and the disintegration is only going to accelerate, says DJ Taylor
Olivia Jacobs & Ben Caplan: 'Ben thought the play was called 'Christian Love'. It was 'Christie in Love' - about a necrophiliac serial killer'

How we met

Olivia Jacobs and Ben Caplan
Bill Granger recipes: Our chef's breakfasts will revitalise you in time for the New Year

Bill Granger's healthy breakfasts

Our chef's healthy recipes are perfect if you've overindulged during the festive season
Transfer guide: From Arsenal to West Ham - what does your club need in the January transfer window?

Who does your club need in the transfer window?

Most Premier League sides are after a striker, but here's a full run down of the ins and outs that could happen over the next month
The Last Word: From aliens at FA to yak’s milk in the Tour, here’s to 2015

Michael Calvin's Last Word

From aliens at FA to yak’s milk in the Tour, here’s to 2015