Arts and Entertainment

Raised in rural County Clare and educated in a convent, Edna O'Brien fled to swinging London to become a novelist. Her frank, autobiographical debut, The Country Girls (1960), caused outrage back in Ireland, but O'Brien considered it a necessary step in her “daring emancipation”.

A tribute to Elizabeth Taylor

The fascinating life of Hollywood's last superstar

Hollywood mourns the ultimate celebrity

Tributes have been pouring in for Elizabeth Taylor, who died yesterday

Dame Elizabeth Taylor: Actress whose life and career made her the last of the great Hollywood stars

Since the late 1960s the nebulous concept of stardom has been subjected to a systematic inflation of values. In a routine television series, for instance, the status of some obscurely minor supporting performer is frequently aggrandised into that of "guest star"; many of the freakish menagerie of hangers-on who peopled Andy Warhol's Factory-produced psychodramas complacently styled themselves "superstars"; and Barry Humphries' alter ego, the redoubtable Edna Everage, has risen almost imperceptibly from the humble rank of "housewife" to that of "megastar".

Staircase, Tron Theatre, Glasgow

Fifty-odd years after it was written, Charles Dyer's blackly comic two-hander finally arrives in Scotland.

Ingrid Pitt: Actress and writer who escaped from East Germany and became 'England's first lady of horror'

Statuesque, tawny-haired Ingrid Pitt will be remembered as the buxom actress with exotic looks and an intriguing accent who brought an overt sexuality to Hammer horror, as the star of the studio's first film to concentrate on female protagonists, The Vampire Lovers (1970). She also starred in Countess Dracula (1971), based on a real-life case, in which she played the title character, who drained girls of their blood to retain her youth. After that, her cult following labelled her "England's first lady of horror".

The Exorcist uncut: Secrets of the scariest movie ever made

The Exorcist has been terrifying audiences for decades. But the dark secrets of its making are only now coming to light. Guy Adams reveals the truth of a horror classic

Great lovers: Heights of passion - Part two, N-Z

What causes some relationships to echo through the ages? Their joy? Their intensity? Their resilience? Or their triumph against the odds? Ariane Sherine concludes our two-day celebration of true romance by choosing 25 more couples who, in different ways, embody the power of love

Richard Burton: In from the cold

Richard Burton wasn't just another over-hyped hellraiser with a tawdry love life and a legacy of lousy movies. Look again at the star who brought beauty to the screen, says Geoffrey Macnab

First person: 'I have witnessed 20 exorcisms'

Matt Baglio, 35

Ken Annakin: Film director whose 50 films included 'The Longest Day' and 'The Battle of the Bulge'

Ken Annakin directed over 50 films, ranging from documentaries and popular British hits, such as Holiday Camp and Miranda, to epic international productions including The Longest Day, Those Magnificent Men in Their Flying Machines and The Battle of the Bulge.

Braeroy has easier chance at Didmarton

Point-to-point

Marriage scene: Ingmar Bergman's 'Scenes From A Marriage'

Quiet hell of a rotten relationship

The Collector Of Worlds, by Iliya Troyanovtrans William Hobson

Through Asia and Africa with the invisible man

Look Back in Anger, Jermyn Street Theatre, London

A black Jimmy Porter? Why not? Most people are at ease now with the principle of colour-blind casting. Jimmy Akingbola is an accomplished actor so why shouldn't he portray John Osborne's archetypal angry young man.

Point-to-point: Greenall to close on record with Chorizo

The men's champion, Oliver Greenall, has sound chances at both this weekend's meetings as he attempts to beat the record of 54 winners set by Ashley Farrant in 2004.

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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