Arts and Entertainment Knives out: Martin Freeman in a scene from The Hobbit: The Desolation of Smaug

Peter Jackson's sequel took $92m over Christmas Day and Boxing Day

Lasting impression: Will Ferrell's Dubya is back for one last swansong

Will Ferrell made his name impersonating Bush – and now he's pulling on his cowboy boots to reprise the role in a one-man show

Brian Viner: What's not to like? Plenty that I hear

We all seem to have words and phrases we can't stand

One Click Wonder : W

'W', Oliver Stone’s chronicle of the life and times of George ‘Dubya’ Bush has hit the big screens this weekend. Here we round up five of the most impressive impersonations, spoofs and parodies of the outgoing president

Hit American website targets Little British public

The launchpad for some of America's top comics is to showcase UK talent

My Week In Media: Graham Stuart

Blades of glory: The sports with true Olympic spirit

Forget the 100m sprint – the essence of the modern Olympiad is found in the dozens of lesser-watched sports on the Beijing programme, each offering the viewer its own idiosyncratic pleasures. Here, Independent writers put the case for their favourite events

My Week In Media: Jeff Leach

Cut! Actors' strike threatens to bring Hollywood to a standstill

To have one trade union paralyse Hollywood was strange; two doing it in quick succession feels like carelessness. A threatened walkout by actors, which could begin as early as next week, is throwing major film and television studios into chaos.

Dial 'D' for disaster: The fall of New Line Cinema

From 'Nightmare on Elm Street' to 'Lord of the Rings', New Line Cinema created some of Hollywood's most influential blockbusters. But now its 40-year history is in tatters following a string of big-budget box-office flops. Andrew Gumbel charts the unlikely rise and fall of a Tinseltown institution, while Tim Walker identifies the films that did the damage

Love in the Time of Cholera, 15<br />Lars and the Real Girl, 12A

A modern classic brought to screen is suffocated under snowy wigs

Semi-Pro (15)

They're still trying to bottle the spirit of Dodgeball, but the problem with this latest underdog sports comedy is that it, a) tries too hard (Will Ferrell's gurning) and, b) doesn't try hard enough (Scot Armstrong's feeble screenplay).

Why there's no cockiness with Will Ferrell

The deadpan funnyman now earns more than Tom Cruise. But it won't go to his head, he tells Gill Pringle

Wonderful tour... shame about the cricket: Flintoff's side in line of fire Down Under

The scenery is spectacular, the food and drink magnificent but for England cricketers the main experience of touring Australia is facing a barrage of hostility from the moment they step off the plane, writes Angus Fraser

Bewitched (PG)<br></br>Me and You and Everyone We Know (15)

Samantha loses her magic touch

Wedding Crashers (15)

Lukewarm reception
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A Very British Coup, part two: New novel in pipeline as Jeremy Corbyn's rise inspires sequel

A Very British Coup, part two

New novel in pipeline as Jeremy Corbyn's rise inspires sequel
Philae lander data show comets could have brought 'building blocks of life' to Earth

Philae lander data show comets could have brought 'building blocks of life' to Earth

Icy dust layer holds organic compounds similar to those found in living organisms
What turns someone into a conspiracy theorist? Study to look at why some are more 'receptive' to such theories

What turns someone into a conspiracy theorist?

Study to look at why some are more 'receptive' to such theories
Chinese web dissenters using coded language to dodge censorship filters and vent frustration at government

Are you a 50-center?

Decoding the Chinese web dissenters
The Beatles film Help, released 50 years ago, signalled the birth of the 'metrosexual' man

Help signalled birth of 'metrosexual' man

The Beatles' moptop haircuts and dandified fashion introduced a new style for the modern Englishman, says Martin King
Hollywood's new diet: Has LA stolen New York's crown as the ultimate foodie trend-setter?

Hollywood's new diet trends

Has LA stolen New York's crown as the ultimate foodie trend-setter?
6 best recipe files

6 best recipe files

Get organised like a Bake Off champion and put all your show-stopping recipes in one place
Ashes 2015: Steven Finn goes from being unselectable to simply unplayable

Finn goes from being unselectable to simply unplayable

Middlesex bowler claims Ashes hat-trick of Clarke, Voges and Marsh
Mullah Omar, creator of the Taliban, is dead... for the fourth time

Mullah Omar, creator of the Taliban, is dead... again

I was once told that intelligence services declare their enemies dead to provoke them into popping up their heads and revealing their location, says Robert Fisk
Margaret Attwood on climate change: 'Time is running out for our fragile, Goldilocks planet'

Margaret Atwood on climate change

The author looks back on what she wrote about oil in 2009, and reflects on how the conversation has changed in a mere six years
New Dr Seuss manuscript discovered: What Pet Should I Get? goes on sale this week

New Dr Seuss manuscript discovered

What Pet Should I Get? goes on sale this week
Oculus Rift and the lonely cartoon hedgehog who could become the first ever virtual reality movie star

The cartoon hedgehog leading the way into a whole new reality

Virtual reality is the 'next chapter' of entertainment. Tim Walker gives it a try
Ants have unique ability to switch between individual and collective action, says study

Secrets of ants' teamwork revealed

The insects have an almost unique ability to switch between individual and collective action
Donovan interview: The singer is releasing a greatest hits album to mark his 50th year in folk

Donovan marks his 50th year in folk

The singer tells Nick Duerden about receiving death threats, why the world is 'mentally ill', and how he can write a song about anything, from ecology to crumpets
Let's Race simulator: Ultra-realistic technology recreates thrill of the Formula One circuit

Simulator recreates thrill of F1 circuit

Rory Buckeridge gets behind the wheel and explains how it works