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Jerry Lewis: from Cinderfella to King of Comedy – a career in clips

1 hour ago

The comedy legend Jerry Lewis has died aged 91. We look back over his cinematic highlights

Peter Bradshaw on Jerry Lewis: a knockabout clown with a dark and melancholy inner life

Jerry Lewis obituary

•A life in pictures

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- Xan Brooks

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Silver Reel is latest production firm to move into UK TV market

9 hours ago

The Swiss film company is to branch into high-end TV drama, lured by the weakened pound and generous tax credits for big-budget series

Silver Reel, the Swiss finance and production company behind films including the upcoming Breathe, Andy Serkis’s directorial debut featuring Andrew Garfield and Claire Foy, is launching a €50m (£45.6m) fund to make TV drama in Britain, taking advantage of the weakening of the pound since the Brexit vote.

Silver Reel has invested more than £500m making 35 films in the last decade, frequently working with UK producers and talent in films such as The Wife, starring Glenn Close and Jonathan Pryce. It is now looking to break into the booming British market for high-end TV drama.

Related: Tax breaks and talent fuel UK’s creative industry boom

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- Mark Sweney

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Giorgio Locatelli: new cookbook, new TV show, new lease of life

13 hours ago

With his first cookbook in six years and The Big Family Cooking Showdown on BBC2, Britain’s favourite Italian chef is finally getting over the explosion that shut Locanda Locatelli for months

The only four spaghetti recipes you will ever need, by Giorgio Locatelli

If the 55-year-old chef Giorgio Locatelli suddenly seems everywhere– as a judge on the Bake Off rival, The Big Family Cooking Showdown, which began on BBC2 last week; promoting a new cookbook, Made at Home, his first for six years; the return in the new year of his much-loved travel documentaries with art critic Andrew Graham-Dixon – there’s a reason for that. It has come from a plan he made almost three years ago, with his wife and business partner Plaxy, when he thought his career was over.

In November 2014, Locanda Locatelli, his Michelin-starred restaurant in central London, blew up. There was a gas leak and, »

- Interview by Tim Lewis, recipes by Giorgio Locatelli

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The 25 hidden TV gems you need to see

15 hours ago

From brutal true crime sagas to dark comedies, here’s our writers’ guide to the best underrated shows to stream right now

In December 2004, Scientific American Life published an article entitled The Tyranny of Choice. It argued that constantly being surrounded by indistinguishable everyday options is slowing us down. It’s overloading our minds and paralysing us. It’s making us miserable. If you’ve ever spent an evening listlessly scrolling through Netflix’s infinite library, you’ll know that the Tyranny of Choice is painfully real.

You have never been more swamped with things to watch. There’s regular telly, and then there are the catch-up services. There’s Netflix. There’s Amazon. There’s Now TV. There’s YouTube. If you’re a very specific kind of weirdo, there’s Hayu and the WWE Network, too. You have more TV than you could ever watch in a lifetime »

- Sam Wolfson, Rebecca Nicholson, Jack Seale, Graeme Virtue, David Stubbs, Ben Arnold, Hannah J Davies, Tshepo Mokoena, Mark Gibbings-Jones, Laura Snapes, Gavin Haynes, Kate Solomon, Julia Raeside , Rachel Aroesti, John Robinson, Harriet Gibsone, Oobah Butler, Joel Golby and Stuart Heritage

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Robert Webb: ‘I was never very good at being a boy’

15 hours ago

In this extract from his new memoir, the comedian and actor revisits a village childhood overshadowed by the violent temper of his father and the premature death of his mother. Below, he talks to Alex Clark

My first home was a house called Slieve Moyne in the village of Woodhall Spa, in Lincolnshire. In later years I would think of the place as Tatooine, the planet Luke Skywalker imagines to be furthest from the bright centre of the universe. But for now, it was the universe and one with which I was perfectly content. There was just one problem. When we first meet Luke on Tatooine, he has an issue with his mysteriously absent father. My father, on the other hand, was all too present. And his name might as well have been Darth Vader. Actually it was Paul. It’s a silly comparison of course. Dark Lords of the Sith aren’t constantly wasted. »

- Robert Webb

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The State: a meticulous, human examination of radicalisation

15 hours ago

Channel 4’s new drama avoids the cliches associated with joining Isis, although it falls short of explaining the mentality behind doing so

Related: Peter Kosminsky on The State: ‘I feared I’d be seen as an apologist for a death cult’

In television, at least, Islamist terrorists are generally reduced to a scowl, a black bandana and a sense of diabolical single-mindedness, with little room for nuance. With that in mind, meet Jalal and Shakira. In many ways, they’ll seem familiar. Jalal (Sam Otto) is all lingering puppy fat and wispy facial hair, and calls everyone “bruv”. Shakira (Ony Uhiara) is older; smart, feisty and independent. Both are buying a one-way ticket to Syria in the name of jihad.

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- Phil Harrison

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The week in TV: No More Boys and Girls: Can Kids Go Gender Free?; The Big Family Cooking Showdown and more

17 hours ago

A documentary about gender and the Beeb’s Bake Off wannabe weren’t quite as described on the tin. But Valkyrien zipped along furiously

No More Boys and Girls: Can Kids Go Gender Free? (BBC2) | iPlayer

The Big Family Cooking Showdown (BBC2) | iPlayer

Valkyrien (C4) | All 4

Dangerous Borders (BBC2) | iPlayer

Quacks (BBC2) | iPlayer

Pointlessly unwieldy title of the week – against, as we shall come to see, some stiff competition – was No More Boys and Girls: Can Kids Go Gender Free? Managing to combine foot-in-mouth length and borderline dystopian threats with that irreducibly twee ‘kids’, it turned out to encompass nothing more sinister than an exploration of simple equality: the first of a rather splendid two-parter in which Dr Javed Abdelmoneim aided by some impossibly sunny children and teachers on the Isle of Wight, sought simply to address the balance in expectations among seven-year-olds, depending on whether they’re a boy or a girl. »

- Euan Ferguson

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Sunday's best TV: The State; Dragons' Den; Astronauts – Do You Have What It Takes?

18 hours ago

Peter Kosminsky’s new drama about Islamic State kicks off, two new Dragons enter the Den and 12 wannabe astronauts are put through their paces

After the period plotting of Wolf Hall, writer-director Peter Kosminsky returns to the 21st century for this hot-button drama, screening over the next four nights. Informed by first-hand testimony, it follows four young Brits as they abandon their lives in the UK to join Islamic State in Syria. Stranded in a coercive but also oddly beguiling world of absolutes, each initiate has to reconcile their idealised religious fantasy with the reality. Graeme Virtue

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- Graeme Virtue, David Stubbs, Andrew Mueller, Jonathan Wright, Phil Harrison, Mark Gibbings-Jones, Ben Arnold and Paul Howlett

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Nazis, noir and Weimar decadence: Babylon Berlin recreates an era for TV detective drama

19 August 2017 4:04 PM, PDT

Volker Kutscher, German author of series of bestsellers now coming to TV, tells how he was inspired by The Sopranos and Raymond Chandler

One of the most expensive drama series ever created for television will be screened in the autumn – a 16-part crime story set in 1920s Germany costing £36m.

The German-language Babylon Berlin series has been adapted from a 2008 bestselling thriller by Volker Kutscher. Set in the glamorous and decadent world of 1920s Berlin, with communists and Nazis clashing on the city’s streets, it follows a young police inspector who investigates a porn ring and uncovers a web of corruption.

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- Dalya Alberge

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Modern Toss – cartoon

19 August 2017 4:00 AM, PDT

Fancy bingeing on a box set this weekend? Check out the Guide for listings, reviews and more

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- Modern Toss

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Professor T review – Belgian crime thriller gets lost in translation

18 August 2017 11:00 PM, PDT

What happens when you put Morse, Sherlock and Taggart into a blender? Professor Jasper Teerlinck – irascible, brilliant and no fan of Ricky Gervais

Professor T (More4) is a new import from Belgium. I’m not sure whether it’s a drama or a comedy-drama. It depends on what has got lost in translation.

The eponymous protagonist is criminology lecturer and occasional police adviser Professor Jasper Teerlinck. This must be Dutch for “amalgam”, as the prof is as irascible-with-a-capital-i as Morse, has a brilliant mind capable of perfectly profiling a villain from a Single Overlooked Clue à la Sherlock, Ocd like Monk and delivers blisteringly honest appraisals and insults because, like House, he Cares Not What Other People Think. And he has a sad-eyed but unembittered ex-wife in the background, like – oh, too many to count. Also, for those of us of a certain vintage, Professor Teerlinck looks like Taggart put »

- Lucy Mangan

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Saturday's best TV: Inspector Montalbano; Child Genius – The Final

18 August 2017 10:00 PM, PDT

The Sicilian sleuth returns to our screens, as the search for the nation’s brightest young brainbox concludes

Luca Zingaretti’s Italian detective Salvo is back for another season of Sicilian sleuthing and heading back to Vigàta, much to the eternal chagrin of his long-distance missus Livia. This week, it’s the case of a 70-year-old prostitute strangled in her flat. Respected in town, she was sitting on a fortune, too. BBC4 can continue to try to persuade itself and others that this show is highbrow because it’s European, but Italo-Bergerac remains daft as a brush. Ben Arnold

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- Ben Arnold, Sophie Harris, Andrew Mueller, Jonathan Wright, Sharon O'Connell, Luke Holland, Ali Catterall and Paul Howlett

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Matt Okine and Harriet Dyer on drinking, drugs and diversity on TV

18 August 2017 4:01 PM, PDT

The stars of Stan’s newest comedy The Other Guy talk about substance use, relationship faux pas and why their show is an accurate representation of life

In one of the first scenes of Stan’s new original series, The Other Guy, the lead character Aj – played by Matt Okine, who co-wrote the series with Becky Lucas – is lying in a pool of piss on a mattress, passed out drunk next to a stranger.

Aj has just broken up with Liv (Valene Kane), his girlfriend of nine years, after she cheated on him with his best friend and housemate. The piss may or may not be his. (It’s probably his.)

Related: Matt Okine on being the only half-Ghanaian Australian comedian in the room

Related: The Other Guy review – a half-baked comedy not even Matt Okine can save

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- Steph Harmon

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Sir Bruce Forsyth dies aged 89 – video obituary

18 August 2017 12:12 PM, PDT

TV entertainer Sir Bruce Forsyth has died at the age of 89 at his home on Friday afternoon. He was best known for hosting Strictly Come Dancing, and popular game shows including The Generation Game, Play Your Cards Right, and The Price Is Right. Forsyth enjoyed a career in showbusiness spanning 75 years

Bruce Forsyth, king of UK gameshows, dies aged 89

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Bruce Forsyth, king of UK gameshows, dies aged 89

18 August 2017 12:03 PM, PDT

Forsyth, known as host of Play Your Cards Right, Strictly Come Dancing and The Generation Game has died

Mark Lawson: he made Saturday nights swingObituary: TV presenter in a class of his ownShare your tributes and memories

Sir Bruce Forsyth, best known for hosting The Generation Game and Strictly Come Dancing, has died at the age of 89.

The TV entertainer died at his home on Friday afternoon, with his wife, Wilnelia, and his children beside him. He had recently contracted bronchial pneumonia.

Related: Bruce Forsyth – a life in pictures

He was the King of TV, the Prince of performers and the most generous of people... all toe-tapping twinkle, all kindness, all love....

The Bruce you saw really was the man he was. We'll miss him so much.

Extremely sad news that Sir Bruce Forsyth has past away My thoughts with @LadyForsyth & all the family He was a true legend and inspiration

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- Damien Gayle and agencies

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The State: can this show about British jihadis avoid justifying extremism?

18 August 2017 9:30 AM, PDT

With its rapes, beheadings and joyous celebrations of martyrdom, Peter Kosminsky’s unflinching drama goes right to the heart of Isis. But how do you keep viewers onside when every major character is a jihadist?

One job of fiction is to travel to the places where reporting fails because the participants can’t or won’t talk. As Islamic State doesn’t run much of a PR effort (apart from posting videos of desert executions) it’s almost impossible for documentary-makers to get access to either the leaders of the jihadist group or those educated young European men and women who – inexplicably to most in the west – are willing to travel to Syria to face, if men, death; and, if women, rape.

The State, which will be on Channel 4 for four nights from Sunday, uses drama to enter this otherwise impenetrable head-space. The Syrian scenes were shot in Spain, »

- Mark Lawson

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'It's a terribly fine line': the stunt performers risking their lives for Hollywood

18 August 2017 9:25 AM, PDT

This summer, two Hollywood stunt performers were killed on set in the first stunt-related fatalities since 2002. How will these tragedies affect the industry?

If there’s one common denominator among the highest-grossing films of the 21st century, it’s that most include tremendously elaborate action sequences. There are the colossal sinking ships of the Pirates of the Caribbean franchise, the explosive pyrotechnics of Michael Bay’s Transformers, and the street bikes, crashing through glass and whizzing beneath 18-wheelers, of The Dark Knight.

With each year these sequences become bigger, faster, more ambitious and more expensive. Inevitably, they turn more dangerous, too. And the people who bring them to life – the invisible, undervalued warriors of Hollywood, whose days consist of car hits and fire burns and jumps from death-defying altitudes – are the stunt performers.

Related: Stunt driver dies on set of Deadpool 2 after motorcycle scene goes wrong

Related: Why stuntwomen »

- Jake Nevins

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Didn't he do well: how Bruce Forsyth made Saturday nights swing

18 August 2017 9:09 AM, PDT

He was a one-man variety act, a singing, dancing, joking, hosting whirlwind of niceness whose extraordinary TV career spanned a staggering eight decades

Records, it is often said, are made to be broken. But the showbiz career of Sir Bruce Forsyth – from a teenage music hall act as “Boy Bruce, the Mighty Atom” to Strictly Come Dancing – will surely only be beaten if someone can achieve an even more spectacular combination of precocity, longevity and ability to adapt to new entertainment formats. Remarkably, his TV credits spanned three quarters of a century – most of the medium’s lifetime.

Related: Bruce Forsyth, king of UK gameshows, dies aged 89

So long was his career that he appealed to successive sets of fans as a surrogate brother, husband, father and grandad

Related: Bruce Forsyth – a life in pictures

Strictly gave him a final ratings-topping hit, still showing the fast feet of a trained dancer

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- Mark Lawson

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Sir Bruce Forsyth obituary: a TV presenter in a class of his own

18 August 2017 9:08 AM, PDT

Entertainer who began his career in variety and became an enduringly popular TV host

How Bruce Forsyth made Saturday nights swingA life in picturesShare your tributes and memories

Bruce Forsyth, who has died aged 89, was associated with some of the most successful shows in television history, from Sunday Night at the London Palladium in the late 1950s to The Generation Game in the 1970s and, for a decade from 2004, Strictly Come Dancing, a light-entertainment phenomenon that attracts a third of the viewing audience to BBC1 on a Saturday night.

As a compere, game-show host and fleet-footed comedian, he was in a class of his own, providing an authentic link between the old days of variety, where he started as a youthful sensation during the second world war, and the new craze for audience participation and reality television. He had appeared in variety (and indeed on the golf course) with the great Max Miller, »

- Michael Coveney

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Tina Fey slams white supremacists on SNL after Charlottesville violence – video

18 August 2017 8:59 AM, PDT

Tina Fey appears on Saturday Night Live’s Weekend Update special on Thursday, and urged people to tell white supremacists that ‘it’s not our country, we stole it from the Native Americans’

Tina Fey to white supremacists: ‘It’s not our country, we stole it from the Native Americans’

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