American Trade, Hampstead Theatre, London

Gay, black and from a troubled background in Miami, Tarell Alvin McCraney announced himself on these shores in 2007, with The Brothers Size at the Young Vic. Effortlessly straddling contemporary life in Louisana and immemorial myth, the play was a mesmerisingly ritualistic three-hander about an intense sibling relationship. Now we have American Trade, which is largely set in London and which has a large cast of 18 performers. Well, that's what comes from spending so much time here – specifically as the writer in residence of the Royal Shakespeare Company.

Polymers 'to help fake notes fight'

Scientists have developed a material which could help in the fight against counterfeit banknotes and passports.

Two held over Ukranian's murder

Gardai working with the Police Service of Northern Ireland have arrested two men over the murder of another man from Ukraine.

Exeter face points deduction

Exeter face a potential points deduction after admitting they broke Aviva Premiership regulations by fielding three overseas players against Leeds on April 3.

Leading article: In for the count

It is C-day plus one and a time to reflect and regret, not least because this year's UK census may be the last. Did you count the rooms in your home correctly? Are you sure, even now, how many people live there? Did you complete the optional answer on religion? How do you get to work? Are you sure you remembered to post it?

New exhibition reveals snapshots of the lives behind the lenses

The tables are turned as the pioneers behind the camera are put in the spotlight. Featuring heavyweights Henri Cartier-Bresson, Robert Capa, William Henry Fox Talbot and Weegee, among others, The Lives of Great Photographers exhibition explores their personal stories, which are often overshadowed by their most famous photographs.

Immigration rules leave stateless Malaysians in limbo

Misleading legal advice has stripped people of their nationality, leaving them unable to stay in Britain or to work in their home country

Mason cleared for Hull KR debut

Hull KR have temporarily de-registered their Australian scrum-half, Michael Dobson, so that Willie Mason can make his debut on Sunday. Mason has not yet procured his Tongan passport, so can only play on Rovers' overseas quota – which was full.

Manchester United right to snub fan groups says David Gill

Manchester United chief executive David Gill today insisted the club were right to snub fan groups who were "at war with the owners".

Unknown (12A)

This so-so amnesiac thriller is guilty of a memory slip of its own. Its star, Liam Neeson, at one point flashes a passport with a date of birth indicating he's 46 – he's actually 58, and looking it. He plays a scientist who wakes up from a coma in a Berlin hospital bed without any means of identification: is he the victim of a fraud, or has he actually lost his mind? Diane Kruger plays an illegal immigrant who helps him piece the puzzle together, and Bruno Ganz adds some melancholy class as an ex-Stazi officer-turned-private eye. As a psychological teaser it has nothing on Memento, and the denouement is the daftest imaginable, but there's a serviceable urgency even once plausibility is knocked out cold.

Number of UK immigrants up by 22%

The number of foreigners settling in the UK rose by more than a fifth last year, figures show.

ID cards cost £2m to decommission

More than £2.25m will be paid to compensate private firms after the Government abandoned the ID card scheme, in one of the first acts of the Coalition. Up to £400,000 will also have to be spent on decommissioning the systems and destroying personal data.

ID cards compensation costs £2.25m

More than £2.25 million of taxpayers' money will be used to compensate private firms after the Government axed the ID card scheme, Immigration Minister Damian Green has said.

Out with Asbos – and in with iPod seizures

Troublemakers could have their passports confiscated under an overhaul of the powers available to courts and police to tackle persistent anti-social behaviour.

Biffy Clyro make second attempt at America

Biffy Clyro are trying to crack America for the second time.

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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
Homeless Veterans appeal: 'You look for someone who's an inspiration and try to be like them'

Homeless Veterans appeal

In 2010, Sgt Gary Jamieson stepped on an IED in Afghanistan and lost his legs and an arm. He reveals what, and who, helped him to make a remarkable recovery
Could cannabis oil reverse the effects of cancer?

Could cannabis oil reverse effects of cancer?

As a film following six patients receiving the controversial treatment is released, Kate Hilpern uncovers a very slippery issue
The Interview movie review: You can't see Seth Rogen and James Franco's Kim Jong Un assassination film, but you can read about it here

The Interview movie review

You can't see Seth Rogen and James Franco's Kim Jong Un assassination film, but you can read about it here
Serial mania has propelled podcasts into the cultural mainstream

How podcasts became mainstream

People have consumed gripping armchair investigation Serial with a relish typically reserved for box-set binges
Jesus Christ has become an unlikely pin-up for hipster marketing companies

Jesus Christ has become an unlikely pin-up

Kevin Lee Light, aka "Jesus", is the newest client of creative agency Mother while rival agency Anomaly has launched Sexy Jesus, depicting the Messiah in a series of Athena-style poses
Rosetta space mission voted most important scientific breakthrough of 2014

A memorable year for science – if not for mice

The most important scientific breakthroughs of 2014
Christmas cocktails to make you merry: From eggnog to Brown Betty and Rum Bumpo

Christmas cocktails to make you merry

Mulled wine is an essential seasonal treat. But now drinkers are rediscovering other traditional festive tipples. Angela Clutton raises a glass to Christmas cocktails
5 best activity trackers

Fitness technology: 5 best activity trackers

Up the ante in your regimen and change the habits of a lifetime with this wearable tech
Paul Scholes column: It's a little-known fact, but I have played one of the seven dwarves

Paul Scholes column

It's a little-known fact, but I have played one of the seven dwarves
Fifa's travelling circus once again steals limelight from real stars

Fifa's travelling circus once again steals limelight from real stars

Club World Cup kicked into the long grass by the continued farce surrounding Blatter, Garcia, Russia and Qatar
Frank Warren column: 2014 – boxing is back and winning new fans

Frank Warren: Boxing is back and winning new fans

2014 proves it's now one of sport's biggest hitters again
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