The method and the madness of film directors

Infamous obsessive James Cameron spent £180m on 'Avatar', which opens this week, making it the most expensive movie ever shot. Andrew Johnson and Rachel Shields look at the giants – and tyrants – of the film world

James Cameron: Another planet

He's the Hollywood director who dreams big and spends even bigger. And the results – as his sci-fi epic 'Avatar' proves – are staggering

First Night: Avatar, Odeon, Leicester Square

London rolls out the blue carpet for Avatar (and it's actually quite good)

London rolls out the blue carpet for Cameron blockbuster

Some 15 years and a reported £300m after the idea first occurred to him, director James Cameron said that seeing the 3-D world of Avatar on the big screen, at its world premiere in London last night was a "big relief".

Avatar - Gateway to a new world

James Cameron's long-awaited 3D science-fiction epic Avatar opens this month. Geoffrey Macnab recounts the Titanic director's long struggle to make it, and asks whether the film will revolutionise cinema

From Avatar to District 9: The end is nigh...

It's all doom and gloom this autumn as films and books offer a dystopian vision of the future. Mark Jewsbury reports

Emma Townshend: 'Avatar' - A great big cartoon for grown-ups with a 1950s script

3D glasses got big! This is us on Friday night in the London IMAX, waiting for a sneak 15 minute preview of James Cameron's long-awaited 'Avatar'.

British 3D technology ready to come of age

UK film companies are set to muscle in on their US rivals as 'Avatar', James Cameron's new sci-fi blockbuster, opens up the market

Aliens in the Attic (PG)

A pleasant, inconsequential movie about resourceful kids fighting off an alien invasion in suburban Michigan.

James Cameron, Peter Jackson talk future of film

Titanic. Lord of the Rings. Aliens. King Kong. The Terminator.

The men behind those movies, James Cameron and Peter Jackson, are among modern film's special-effects kings, advancing technology in computer-generated imagery, motion-capture photography and 3-D.

Millvina Dean: The last survivor of the sinking of the Titanic

Millvina Dean had the double distinction of being both the youngest passenger on the Titanic and the last of the survivors of its sinking in the Atlantic in 1912. Her life almost ended at the age of nine weeks when the liner sank after its collision with an iceberg. But instead of a tragically short life she had a particularly long one, reaching the age of 97.

Terminator Salvation, McG, 115 mins, Cert (12A)

Arnie-type Terminators are in their infancy in this prequel-sequel gun-fest, but who cares? In McG's dull dystopia even humans talk like machines, and a never-ending war franchise means that ... they'll be back

Terminator Salvation (12A)

Really no need to come back

Terminator - Still going great guns?

It's been 25 years since Arnold Schwarzenegger fired up a franchise that set a new standard in sci-fi. But can the new 'Terminator' movie carry the same clout, asks Tim Walker
Arts and Entertainment
The Doctor and Clara have their first real heart to heart since he regenerated in 'Deep Breath'
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Life and Style
Apple showed no sign of losing its talent for product launches with the new, slightly larger iPhone 6 making headlines
techSecurity breaches and overhyped start-ups dominated a year in which very little changed (save the size of your phone)
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Jamie Oliver
filmTV chef Jamie Oliver turned down role in The Hobbit
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The official police photograph of Dustin Diamond taken after he was arrested in Wisconsin
peopleDownfall of the TV star charged with bar stabbing
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Jeremy Clarkson, left, and Richard Hammond upset the locals in South America
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Sport
Ashley Barnes of Burnley scores their second goal
footballMan City vs Burnley match report
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Peter Mayhew as Chewbacca alongside Harrison Ford's Han Solo in 'Star Wars'
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Arts and Entertainment
Man of action: Christian Bale stars in Exodus: Gods and Kings
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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
A timely reminder of the bloody anniversary we all forgot

A timely reminder of the bloody anniversary we all forgot

Who remembers that this week we enter the 150th anniversary year of the end of the American Civil War, asks Robert Fisk
Homeless Veterans appeal: Former soldiers pay their respects to a friend who also served

Homeless Veterans appeal

Former soldiers pay their respects to a friend who also served
Downfall of Dustin 'Screech' Diamond, the 'Saved By The Bell' star charged with bar stabbing

Scarred by the bell

The downfall of the TV star charged with bar stabbing
Why 2014 was a year of technological let-downs

Why 2014 was a year of technological let-downs

Security breaches and overhyped start-ups dominated a year in which very little changed (save the size of your phone)
Cuba's golf revolution: But will the revolutionary nation take 'bourgeois' game to its heart?

Will revolutionary Cuba take 'bourgeois' golf to its heart?

Fidel Castro ridiculed the game – but now investment in leisure resort projects is welcome
The Locked Room Mysteries: As a new collection of the genre’s best is published, its editor Otto Penzler explains the rules of engagement

The Locked Room Mysteries

As a new collection of the genre’s best is published, its editor explains the rules of engagement
Amy Adams on playing painter Margaret Keane in Tim Burton's Big Eyes

How I made myself Keane

Amy Adams hadn’t wanted to take the role of artist Margaret Keane, because she’d had enough of playing victims. But then she had a daughter, and saw the painter in a new light
Ed Richards: Parting view of Ofcom chief. . . we hate jokes on the disabled

Parting view of Ofcom chief... we hate jokes on the disabled

Bad language once got TV viewers irate, inciting calls to broadcasting switchboards. But now there is a worse offender, says retiring head of the media watchdog, Ed Richards
A look back at fashion in 2014: Wear in review

Wear in review

A look back at fashion in 2014
Ian Herbert: My 10 hopes for sport in 2015. Might just one of them happen?

Ian Herbert: My 10 hopes for sport in 2015

Might just one of them happen?
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?