Arts and Entertainment

With stand-up dominated by the one-comic-and-a mic-form of observational humour, it's little wonder that some comedians are seeking more alternative modes of expression to set themselves apart. The Boy with Tape On His Face distinguishes himself with a joyously retro presentation of silent, performance-led humour, while the bestowal of the Edinburgh Comedy Award on Phil Burgers last year, for his mute, sexualised and playfully scary bouffon Dr Brown, echoed and endorsed the stand-up circuit's burgeoning interest in clowning.

Burton film 'Frankenweenie' to open London film festival

Director Tim Burton's new animated 3D film Frankenweenie is to open the 56th BFI London Film Festival, it has been announced.

Dickens tops chart as classic tales remain a hit with parents

A Christmas Carol, Charles Dickens' 1843 classic in which the stingy Ebenezer Scrooge discovers the generous Christmas spirit, is the book parents most want to pass on to their children, according to a new poll.

Takings for British films top £1bn for first time

The public flocked to see British films last year as UK box-office takings passed £1bn for the first time. The British Film Institute, publishing its 10th annual Statistical Yearbook yesterday, hailed 2011 as a year in which "British film thrived".

Death or glory: Chris Hemsworth (Thor) and Chris Evans (Steve Rogers/Captain America) in ‘Avengers Assemble’

The Avengers film takes $1 billion worldwide in first 19 days

The Avengers movie has topped the American box office for the second week in a row, taking $1 billion in its first 19 days.

Charles Edwards as King George VI and Emma Fielding as Queen Elizabeth in the stage version of The King's Speech

King's Speech film killed us off, say stars of stuttering West End show

Acclaimed production to close less than eight weeks into its run

The Gruffalo's Child (U)

"Aha! Oho! Marks in the snow! Whose are these claw marks? Where do they go?"

British films prove box office hits

The success of The King's Speech and The Inbetweeners has helped independent British films to a greater share of box office receipts than ever before.

Archie Bland: Let's make the Oscars a ceremony you can sit through

I've always viewed the Oscars roughly the way I view Formula One: I'm quite interested in knowing the results, but the process by which they're produced is basically unwatchable. Over here, where things are still amateur enough that something is liable to go wrong – see Freddie Starr's recent inscrutable performance at the Comedy Awards – they're still reasonably entertaining.

Just like a scene from the movies . . .

Blockbuster movies part-filmed in the UK are expected to boost "location vacation" tourism in 2012. Castle Combe, in Wiltshire, prominent in Steven Spielberg's War Horse, and Layer Marney Tower near Colchester, used in The Woman in Black, are two locations hoping for a boom in visitors.

Royal recognition for 'Queen Mother' Helena

New Year Honours: Entertainment

Bicentenary of Dickens's birth sparks off a battle of the bonnets

Such is the frenzy of filming activity surrounding the bicentenary of the birth of Charles Dickens that two of Hollywood's best-known actresses, Helena Bonham Carter and Gillian Anderson, find themselves in a battle of the bonnets as they both prepare to play the role of Miss Havisham in Great Expectations.

DVD: The King's Speech, For retail & rental (Momentum)

A reassuring tale of friendship and determination overcoming every obstacle, The King's Speech was the safe, conventional choice for Oscar voters.

DVD: The King's Speech (12)

Tom Hooper's determinedly feelgood period piece doesn't delve too much into that ghastly Hitler business, and doesn't address the fact that Winston Churchill was allegedly rather fonder of the abdicating Edward, than his brother, Albert ("Bertie" to his nearest), Duke of York.

Katie: My Beautiful Friends, Channel 4, Tuesday <br/> Women in Love, BBC4, Friday <br/> Midsomer Murders, ITV1, Wednesday

What threatened to be yet another gawp at disfigurement, ended on a note of uplifting hope

The full list of Oscar Winners

Following is a compete list of winners at the 83rd annual Academy Awards in Hollywood.

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Jeb Bush vs Hillary Clinton: The power dynamics of the two first families

Jeb Bush vs Hillary Clinton

Karen Tumulty explores the power dynamics of the two first families
Stockholm is rivalling Silicon Valley with a hotbed of technology start-ups

Stockholm is rivalling Silicon Valley

The Swedish capital is home to two of the most popular video games in the world, as well as thousands of technology start-ups worth hundreds of millions of pounds – and it's all happened since 2009
Did Japanese workers really get their symbols mixed up and display Santa on a crucifix?

Crucified Santa: Urban myth refuses to die

The story goes that Japanese store workers created a life-size effigy of a smiling "Father Kurisumasu" attached to a facsimile of Our Lord's final instrument of torture
Jennifer Saunders and Kate Moss join David Walliams on set for TV adaptation of The Boy in the Dress

The Boy in the Dress: On set with the stars

Walliams' story about a boy who goes to school in a dress will be shown this Christmas
La Famille Bélier is being touted as this year's Amelie - so why are many in the deaf community outraged by it?

Deaf community outraged by La Famille Bélier

The new film tells the story of a deaf-mute farming family and is being touted as this year's Amelie
10 best high-end laptops

10 best high-end laptops

From lightweight and zippy devices to gaming beasts, we test the latest in top-spec portable computers
Michael Carberry: ‘After such a tough time, I’m not sure I will stay in the game’

Michael Carberry: ‘After such a tough time, I’m not sure I will stay in the game’

The batsman has grown disillusioned after England’s Ashes debacle and allegations linking him to the Pietersen affair
Susie Wolff: A driving force in battle for equality behind the wheel

Susie Wolff: A driving force in battle for equality behind the wheel

The Williams driver has had plenty of doubters, but hopes she will be judged by her ability in the cockpit
Adam Gemili interview: 'No abs Adam' plans to muscle in on Usain Bolt's turf

'No abs Adam' plans to muscle in on Usain Bolt's turf

After a year touched by tragedy, Adam Gemili wants to become the sixth Briton to run a sub-10sec 100m
Calls for a military mental health 'quality mark'

Homeless Veterans campaign

Expert calls for military mental health 'quality mark'
Racton Man: Analysis shows famous skeleton was a 6ft Bronze Age superman

Meet Racton Man

Analysis shows famous skeleton was a 6ft Bronze Age superman
Garden Bridge: St Paul’s adds to £175m project’s troubled waters

Garden Bridge

St Paul’s adds to £175m project’s troubled waters
Stuff your own Christmas mouse ornament: An evening class in taxidermy with a festive feel

Stuff your own Christmas mouse ornament

An evening class in taxidermy with a festive feel
Joint Enterprise: The legal doctrine which critics say has caused hundreds of miscarriages of justice

Joint Enterprise

The legal doctrine which critics say has caused hundreds of miscarriages of justice
Freud and Eros: Love, Lust and Longing at the Freud Museum: Objects of Desire

Freud and Eros

Love, Lust and Longing at the Freud Museum