Arts and Entertainment

John Sheppard "Sacred Choral Music" (Delphian)

I had no great aspirations regarding roles: Fowler (left) in John Paddy Carstairs' 'Top of the Form' (1953)

Harry Fowler: Prolific screen actor known for his 'cheerful cockney' characters

The archetypal "cheerful cockney" on screen, Harry Fowler was also the quintessential character actor.

Ready To Wear: Is this brand protection or control freakery?

New year; new fashion spat. And it's a big one.

Madonna deal to last beyond 60

Madonna has signed a new record deal with Universal that could see her releasing albums past the age of 60.

Postcards from the veg: Carl Warner's food landscapes aren't just beautiful, they're downright delicious

If Carl Warner's photography looks good enough to eat, that's because it is. His landscape portraits are created entirely out of food. Trees are made from broccoli, the clouds are cauliflower and mountains are formed from piles of mashed potato. The result is a body of work that is irreverent, whimsical and fun. Warner created his first "foodscape" in 1999, after a trip to the market left him thinking how much Portobello mushrooms looked like trees. That led to Mushroom Savanna, which re-imagined the fungi as part of an African landscape.

Soderbergh ends movie career to focus on painting

The American film director Steven Soderbergh's career has had more twists and drama than the kind of Rat Pack remake that made his name.

Album: Red Hot Chili Peppers, I'm With You (Warner Brothers)

It's business as usual, but with diminishing returns, on I'm With You – the result, perhaps, of sticking with the producer Rick Rubin for six albums.

Last Night's TV: Torchwood: Miracle Day/BBC1<br />The Story of British Path&#233;/BBC4

Trying to catch up with a series like Torchwood: Miracle Day is a bit like trying to get up to speed in Sumerian mythology in just 10 minutes. Actually, it's worse, since the cross-series references that produce a warm bolus of joy inside true devotees mean you don't have only one belief system to disentangle. If Enki, the Sumerian deity of crafts, occasionally popped up on Mount Olympus, in ways that were critical to a full understanding of later Greek theology, then you'd be a bit closer to it. I don't have the time (or the inclination frankly) to engage in such an arduous field of scholarship, so I might as well confess right now that I don't have the faintest idea what Phi-Corp is or what the Trickster's Brigade are up to or how Jack keeps skipping around between different time dimensions. What I can say, on just two minutes' acquaintance with the current series, is that it has a great central idea. Everybody has stopped dying, one of those monkey's paw miracles that looks like a blessing but turns out to be a catastrophe. Jack and his Torchwood cronies are currently trying to find out why it's happened, though the urgency of their quest doesn't appear to prevent Jack spending quite a bit of happy downtime with a fetching young Italian immigrant called Angelo.

DVD: Red Riding Hood, Warner Bros (For rental &amp; retail)

The director of Twilight gives us another heroine (Amanda Seyfried) who's being fought over by two chiselled boys (Shiloh Fernandez and Max Irons), one of whom may or may not be a werewolf.

Screen Talk: Apocalypse wow

Hollywood is embracing world concerns over future predictions of coming apocalyptic events by making movies.

Album: Joshua Radin, The Rock and the Tide (Warner Bros)

Thirty-six-year-old Joshua Radin, in case you're bewildered by modern music's deluge of Joshes, is the singer-songwriter from Ohio who had a medium-sized hit last year with "I'd Rather Be With You".

Screen Talk: Back down to earth

Bad news for fanboys. Zack Snyder's take on the Superman legend, Man of Steel, has been temporarily grounded by Warner Bros.

John Walsh: Hey - that's Eric Idle at the next table

I'm just back from Los Angeles, where they make up their own rules about reality. Where your lovely hostess asks if, being British, you'd like a proper full English breakfast and you find that the bacon you're eating is Turkey Bacon, (with, according to the label, "50 per cent less fat than pork bacon") and the strangely sweet sausage is, duh, Chicken Apple Sausage (equally less fat-bearing than that awful pork stuff) and the salt you grind over your eggs isn't any old sea salt, it's Trader Joe's Himalayan Pink Salt Crystals (product of Pakistan).

Bad boy Sheen is back, but can he find a broadcaster?

Four months and millions of "tweets" after the spectacular implosion that saw him sacked from one of America's most lucrative television shows, Charlie Sheen is trying to return to the small screen.

Screen Talk: Reconstructing comedy

Unique is a word often used in Hollywood to elevate one project above another in the clamour for attention. It is currently the word being bandied about for a comedy pitch from the writer-director Rob Pearlstein, which also enjoys the favour of actor Ed Helms, who is currently on screens as Stu in Warner Bros' The Hangover Part II.

The spell is broken: What will replace Harry Potter?

Next week, the last film in the saga of JK Rowling's boy wizard has its premiere. Geoffrey Macnab wonders where the next billion-dollar franchise will come from, and whether anything will ever have the same magic
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Day In a Page

Burgundy, the River Rhone & Provence – MS Swiss Corona - seven nights from £999pp
Lake Maggiore, Orta and the Matterhorn – seven nights from £899pp
Sicily – seven nights from £939pp
Pompeii, Capri and the Bay of Naples - seven nights from £799pp
Istanbul Ephesus & Troy – six nights from £859pp
Mary Rose – two nights from £319pp
A new Russian revolution: Cracks start to appear in Putin’s Kremlin power bloc

A new Russian revolution

Cracks start to appear in Putin’s Kremlin power bloc
Eugene de Kock: Apartheid’s sadistic killer that his country cannot forgive

Apartheid’s sadistic killer that his country cannot forgive

The debate rages in South Africa over whether Eugene de Kock should ever be released from jail
Standing my ground: If sitting is bad for your health, what happens when you stay on your feet for a whole month?

Standing my ground

If sitting is bad for your health, what happens when you stay on your feet for a whole month?
Commonwealth Games 2014: Dai Greene prays for chance to rebuild after injury agony

Greene prays for chance to rebuild after injury agony

Welsh hurdler was World, European and Commonwealth champion, but then the injuries crept in
Israel-Gaza conflict: Secret report helps Israelis to hide facts

Patrick Cockburn: Secret report helps Israel to hide facts

The slickness of Israel's spokesmen is rooted in directions set down by pollster Frank Luntz
The man who dared to go on holiday

The man who dared to go on holiday

New York's mayor has taken a vacation - in a nation that has still to enforce paid leave, it caused quite a stir, reports Rupert Cornwell
Best comedians: How the professionals go about their funny business, from Sarah Millican to Marcus Brigstocke

Best comedians: How the professionals go about their funny business

For all those wanting to know how stand-ups keep standing, here are some of the best moments
The Guest List 2014: Forget the Man Booker longlist, Literary Editor Katy Guest offers her alternative picks

The Guest List 2014

Forget the Man Booker longlist, Literary Editor Katy Guest offers her alternative picks
Jokes on Hollywood: 'With comedy film audiences shrinking, it’s time to move on'

Jokes on Hollywood

With comedy film audiences shrinking, it’s time to move on
It's the best of British art... but not all is on display

It's the best of British art... but not all is on display

Voted for by the British public, the artworks on Art Everywhere posters may be the only place where they can be seen
Critic claims 'I was the inspiration for Blanche DuBois'

Critic claims 'I was the inspiration for Blanche DuBois'

Blanche Marvin reveals how Tennessee Williams used her name and an off-the-cuff remark to create an iconic character
Sometimes it's hard to be a literary novelist

Sometimes it's hard to be a literary novelist

Websites offering your ebooks for nothing is only the latest disrespect the modern writer is subjected to, says DJ Taylor
Edinburgh Fringe 2014: The comedy highlights, from Bridget Christie to Jack Dee

Edinburgh Fringe 2014

The comedy highlights, from Bridget Christie to Jack Dee
Dame Jenny Abramsky: 'We have to rethink. If not, museums and parks will close'

Dame Jenny Abramsky: 'We have to rethink. If not, museums and parks will close'

The woman stepping down as chair of the Heritage Lottery Fund is worried