Arts and Entertainment Emma Thompson arriving for the National Board of Review Awards in New York

The actor Emma Thompson has spoken out this week in favour of gender-blind casting, admitting her particular desire to play the role of Sherlock Holmes.

Ronna & Beverly, Soho Theatre, London

Ronna and Beverly are Jessica Chaffin and Jamie Denbo, two American "thirtysomething" actors playing "fiftysomething" Jewish mothers who have co-authored abook of relationship advice called "You'll Do Better Next Time". But the duo aren't just self-help authors, they also fancy themselves as chat-show hosts and their guests have previously included Matthew Perry and Russell Brand. Matt Lucas is tonight's guest star and, though he has appeared before, his changeable expression seems to mirror the uneven ride that Ronna and Beverly take their audience on over the hour.

'Dingo baby' jury notes shed light on Australia's most famous trial

Lost Lindy Chamberlain papers prove the 1980 verdict was anything but unanimous

Pilgrims, By Garrison Keillor

Not everyone finds Garrison Keillor's Lake Wobegon tales as beguiling or amusing as I do, but even the most resistant would surely warm to this sharply observed exodus of Minnesotans to the Eternal City, where they find love, freedom and, er, the opportunity to stay exactly the same if they want to.

Meryl Streep takes on her toughest role: the Iron Lady

She has played an Auschwitz survivor, a nuclear-reactor worker-turned- whistleblower, and the ruthless editor of a fashion magazine. Now Meryl Streep has been lined up to play the leading role in Thatcher, a biopic of one of the most controversial prime ministers in British history.

Meryl Streep 'lined up to play Baroness Thatcher'

Hollywood star Meryl Streep is in discussions to play Baroness Thatcher in a new film, it was confirmed today.

Joan Smith: The male-female divide gets worse as you grow older

New research suggests men can expect a longer sex life than women

The Road, John Hillcoat, 111 mins, (15)<br/>It's Complicated, Nancy Meyers, 115 mins, (15)

There are no cars, no zombies and no hope in this poetic, cheerless trudge through a post-apocalyptic America

It's Complicated (12A)

Nancy Meyers, who has made two of my least favourite movies of all time in What Women Want and The Holiday, adds to her charge-sheet with this egregiously stupid comedy of middle-aged romance.

Natalie Portman has a 'no boobs' policy

Natalie Portman has revealed that she has no plans to go nude on the big screen.

Meryl Streep: Golden girl

No good parts in Hollywood for older actresses? Try telling that to a star who turned 60 this year and has never been on such a roll

Alaina Reed-Amini

Alaina Reed-Amini, who died on 17 December aged 63, was the Broadway star and television actress best known for her long-running role on Sesame Street.

Nora Ephron: Woman's wit

Heroine to a generation of wronged wives, the writer and director's latest film has strengthened her claim to be the voice of liberal America

The Black Monastery. By Stav Sherez

A chilly time in the holiday sun

Sarah Sands: My hoard of glam rock outfits tells a happy tale

Two retail strategies are competing in the high street this Christmas. One is the Marks & Spencer belief that women want "investment" clothes, ie, safe and wearable rather than fashionable. The other is that women want something to lift their spirits beyond knee-length navy blue.

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Independent Travel
Pompeii, Capri & the Bay of Naples
Dubrovnik, the Dalmatian Coast & Montenegro
Burgundy, the River Rhone & Provence
Lisbon, Oporto and the Douro Valley
Lake Garda, Venice & Verona
Spain
Prices correct as of 30 January 2015
Isis hostage crisis: The prisoner swap has only one purpose for the militants - recognition its Islamic State exists and that foreign nations acknowledge its power

Isis hostage crisis

The prisoner swap has only one purpose for the militants - recognition its Islamic State exists and that foreign nations acknowledge its power, says Robert Fisk
Missing salvage expert who found $50m of sunken treasure before disappearing, tracked down at last

The runaway buccaneers and the ship full of gold

Salvage expert Tommy Thompson found sunken treasure worth millions. Then he vanished... until now
Homeless Veterans appeal: ‘If you’re hard on the world you are hard on yourself’

Homeless Veterans appeal: ‘If you’re hard on the world you are hard on yourself’

Maverick artist Grayson Perry backs our campaign
Assisted Dying Bill: I want to be able to decide about my own death - I want to have control of my life

Assisted Dying Bill: 'I want control of my life'

This week the Assisted Dying Bill is debated in the Lords. Virginia Ironside, who has already made plans for her own self-deliverance, argues that it's time we allowed people a humane, compassionate death
Move over, kale - cabbage is the new rising star

Cabbage is king again

Sophie Morris banishes thoughts of soggy school dinners and turns over a new leaf
11 best winter skin treats

Give your moisturiser a helping hand: 11 best winter skin treats

Get an extra boost of nourishment from one of these hard-working products
Paul Scholes column: The more Jose Mourinho attempts to influence match officials, the more they are likely to ignore him

Paul Scholes column

The more Jose Mourinho attempts to influence match officials, the more they are likely to ignore him
Frank Warren column: No cigar, but pots of money: here come the Cubans

Frank Warren's Ringside

No cigar, but pots of money: here come the Cubans
Isis hostage crisis: Militant group stands strong as its numerous enemies fail to find a common plan to defeat it

Isis stands strong as its numerous enemies fail to find a common plan to defeat it

The jihadis are being squeezed militarily and economically, but there is no sign of an implosion, says Patrick Cockburn
Virtual reality thrusts viewers into the frontline of global events - and puts film-goers at the heart of the action

Virtual reality: Seeing is believing

Virtual reality thrusts viewers into the frontline of global events - and puts film-goers at the heart of the action
Homeless Veterans appeal: MP says Coalition ‘not doing enough’

Homeless Veterans appeal

MP says Coalition ‘not doing enough’ to help
Larry David, Steve Coogan and other comedians share stories of depression in new documentary

Comedians share stories of depression

The director of the new documentary, Kevin Pollak, tells Jessica Barrett how he got them to talk
Has The Archers lost the plot with it's spicy storylines?

Has The Archers lost the plot?

A growing number of listeners are voicing their discontent over the rural soap's spicy storylines; so loudly that even the BBC's director-general seems worried, says Simon Kelner
English Heritage adds 14 post-war office buildings to its protected lists

14 office buildings added to protected lists

Christopher Beanland explores the underrated appeal of these palaces of pen-pushing
Human skull discovery in Israel proves humans lived side-by-side with Neanderthals

Human skull discovery in Israel proves humans lived side-by-side with Neanderthals

Scientists unearthed the cranial fragments from Manot Cave in West Galilee