hei-fi Jon Hamm as Don Draper in Mad Men

Has there has ever been a tougher time to keep schtum, asks Simon Usborne

Escaping 'spoilers' has never been harder

Sshhhhh! Don't tell anyone about the London 2012 Olympics opening ceremony

As Danny Boyle asks people not to blab about his opening ceremony, Simon Usborne wonders if there's ever been a tougher time to keep schtum

James Corden in One Man, Two Guvnors at the NT Lyttelton

James Corden and Jude Law set for Olivier Awards battle

Gavin and Stacey star James Corden is up against Jude Law for a prestigious theatrical award.

First Night: Frankenstein, Olivier Theatre, London

Imaginative productions pack a devastating punch

It lives! From Mary Shelley to Danny Boyle, why we’re still fascinated by Frankenstein

As a new production of Frankenstein, directed by Danny Boyle, opens at the National Theatre, Paul Taylor looks back at almost two centuries of monsters inspired by Mary Shelley's 1818 masterpiece

Boardwalk empress: Kelly Macdonald on movies, marriage and Martin Scorsese

Danny Boyle discovered her, Irvine Welsh was inspired by her and the Coen brothers love Kelly Macdonald. But even as she journeys back to Prohibition-era America for the Golden Globe winner Boardwalk Empire, the actress is determined not to forget her Glasgow council-estate roots

Le Refuge (15)

Think of drug addiction in movies and the titles likely to spring to mind include Christiane F and Trainspotting.

Lorenzo Agius: Totally exposed

He is one of the few photographers for whom the stars will let down their guard. Lorenzo Agius tells Melanie Abrams the stories behind his best shots

Danny Boyle: Why the Oscars are finally calling for the maverick director

He made his name directing a cast of unknowns in a squalid urban setting, on a tiny budget; 13 years after 'Trainspotting', Danny Boyle has pulled it off again, and 'Slumdog Millionaire' is already a contender for film of the year. Here, the director talks about his Mumbai miracle

Sport on TV: Cards on the table – time for Poll to be shown red

Bring back the poll tax. It will always be an unfair levy, especially at a time when the credit crunch is biting and gas bills can match an Indian cricketer's pay packet, but something has to be done to rid our screens of the ubiquitous Graham Poll. Who would not willingly pay to ensure he stays off air? At the very least it would give Garth Crooks those vital extra minutes to complete his chains of thought.

Irvine Welsh to revive Sick Boy and Renton in 'Trainspotting' prequel

How did they get like that, some of literature's most drug-fuelled characters – Renton, Sick Boy, Spud and the rest of their gang in Irvine Welsh's Trainspotting? We're about to find out, because 15 years after his celebrated novel, the Scottish author intends to write a prequel.

Farewell to the 90s

Lads and ladettes, YBAs, Eighties irony with extra computers - that was the decade, that was. By Michael Bracewell

Choose a career. Choose acting

In Trainspotting, Kelly Macdonald snared Ewan McGregor. In Cousin Bette, Jessica Lange stroked her hair. So why did The Matrix resist her charm?

Theatre: All right on the knights

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War with Isis: Iraq declares victory in the battle for Tikrit - but militants make make ominous advances in neighbouring Syria's capital

War with Isis

Iraq declares victory in the battle for Tikrit - but militants make make ominous advances in neighbouring Syria
Scientists develop mechanical spring-loaded leg brace to improve walking

A spring in your step?

Scientists develop mechanical leg brace to help take a load off
Peter Ackroyd on Alfred Hitchcock: How London shaped the director's art and obsessions

Peter Ackroyd on Alfred Hitchcock

Ackroyd has devoted his literary career to chronicling the capital and its characters. He tells John Walsh why he chose the master of suspense as his latest subject
Ryan Reynolds interview: The actor is branching out with Nazi art-theft drama Woman in Gold

Ryan Reynolds branches out in Woman in Gold

For every box-office smash in Ryan Reynolds' Hollywood career, there's always been a misconceived let-down. It's time for a rethink and a reboot, the actor tells James Mottram
Why Robin Williams safeguarded himself against a morbid trend in advertising

Stars safeguard against morbid advertising

As film-makers and advertisers make increasing posthumous use of celebrities' images, some stars are finding new ways of ensuring that they rest in peace
The UK horticulture industry is facing a skills crisis - but Great Dixter aims to change all that

UK horticulture industry facing skills crisis

Great Dixter manor house in East Sussex is encouraging people to work in the industry by offering three scholarships a year to students, as well as generous placements
Hack Circus aims to turn the rule-abiding approach of TED talks on its head

Hack Circus: Technology, art and learning

Hack Circus aims to turn the rule-abiding approach of TED talks on its head. Rhodri Marsden meets mistress of ceremonies Leila Johnston
Sevenoaks is split over much-delayed decision on controversial grammar school annexe

Sevenoaks split over grammar school annexe

If Weald of Kent Grammar School is given the go-ahead for an annexe in leafy Sevenoaks, it will be the first selective state school to open in 50 years
10 best compact cameras

A look through the lens: 10 best compact cameras

If your smartphone won’t quite cut it, it’s time to invest in a new portable gadget
Paul Scholes column: Ross Barkley played well against Italy but he must build on that. His time to step up and seize that England No 10 shirt is now

Paul Scholes column

Ross Barkley played well against Italy but he must build on that. His time to step up and seize that England No 10 shirt is now
Why Michael Carrick is still proving an enigma for England

Why Carrick is still proving an enigma for England

Manchester United's talented midfielder has played international football for almost 14 years yet, frustratingly, has won only 32 caps, says Sam Wallace
Tracey Neville: The netball coach who is just as busy as her brothers, Gary and Phil

Tracey Neville is just as busy as her brothers, Gary and Phil

The former player on how she is finding time to coach both Manchester Thunder in the Superleague and England in this year's World Cup
General Election 2015: The masterminds behind the scenes

The masterminds behind the election

How do you get your party leader to embrace a message and then stick to it? By employing these people
Machine Gun America: The amusement park where teenagers go to shoot a huge range of automatic weapons

Machine Gun America

The amusement park where teenagers go to shoot a huge range of automatic weapons
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The ethics of pet food

Why are we are so selective in how we show animals our love?