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3 items from 2010

TV highlights 31 December

20 December 2010 6:32 AM, PST | The Guardian - TV News | See recent The Guardian - TV News news »

100 Years of the London Palladium | Channel 4 Comedy Gala | Jools' Annual Hootenanny | Rigoletto in Mantua | Come Fly With Me | Justified

100 Years of the London Palladium

9pm, BBC2

Happy Birthday, you old thing. And if the walls of the Palladium could talk, what tales they would tell: from the classic Val Parnell years of the 1950s (Garland, Hope, Sinatra et al), to Slade fans nearly stomping the balcony down in 1973. On the centenary of London's favourite theatre, current owner Andrew Lloyd Webber, along with co-host Brucie, introduce Cliff Richard, Des O'Connor and the ever-glam Sheila Hancock, who share stories and gossip. Sounds fabulously camp. Ajc

Channel 4 Comedy Gala

9.10pm, Channel 4

Time to forget all your troubles, kick back, relax and laugh at a show you probably saw back in April. The O2 Arena plays host to literally quite a few comedians in a show put on to raise money »

- Ali Catterall, Phelim O'Neill, Jonathan Wright, Andrew Mueller, Will Dean, Richard Vine

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Chris Morris pushes Four Lions but America fails to bite

10 November 2010 5:03 AM, PST | The Guardian - Film News | See recent The Guardian - Film News news »

The Us release of Four Lions has seen Chris Morris embark on an unprecedented PR campaign. The results? Great reviews, minimal outrage and ... not much box office action

It has not been a good few months for measured discussion of Islamist extremism in mainstream American culture. From idiot pastors threatening to burn Qur'ans to fingers-in-ears protests against a "Ground Zero mosque" that is neither at Ground Zero nor a mosque, there's been no shortage of the kind of bombastic absurdity that brings Chris Morris to mind. So: enter Chris Morris, bearing a feature film that mines laughs from the efforts of a group of aspiring suicide bombers. You might predict an explosion.

In fact the Us release of Four Lions, which came out on a limited number of screens in major cities last Friday, has been a surprisingly muted affair. Earlier in the year, following the film's premiere at Sundance, »

- Ben Walters

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Peripheral Vision: 'Playing For Change' Means To Move Us With Music

6 August 2010 10:16 AM, PDT | CinemaSpy | See recent CinemaSpy news »

Using music as a tool to bring about social change on a global scale is nothing new. For anyone old enough to recall the 1980s, the embodiment of this (and the worst excesses of that decade's hairstyling and fashion) is surely the original Band-Aid, Live-Aid and USA for Africa events.

Those gatherings helped to kick start the music-for-change movement because they benefited from the involvement of many stars. Their legacy, however, has been many less widely publicized music-based campaigns that face the added challenge of having no big names to attract the media. Playing for Change is one such movement. Backed by the Playing For Change Foundation (Pfcf), the aim of the project is to bring about positive social change through music and education.

Playing for Change was born out of the efforts of a small group of filmmakers who wanted to produce a documentary about street musicians from around the world. »

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