sat 18/08/2018

tv

James Gandolfini 1961-2013

Adam Sweeting

Mobster roles have helped define many of America's greatest screen actors, from James Cagney to Marlon Brando, Robert De Niro and Al Pacino. Thanks to his portrayal of Tony Soprano in HBO's TV masterpiece The Sopranos, James Gandolfini has made an unforgettable addition to their ranks.

Read more...

theartsdesk in Bradford: Bollywood Carmen Live

Jasper Rees

“My generation all were steeped in Bollywood.” Meera Syal, Wolverhampton born and bred, is recalling the cinematic influences of her youth. “It was our major link to India and was much more current than trying to make a phone call. You did feel that, though you were so far away, you were watching the same movies as your cousins.”

Read more...

Inspector Morse's Last Round

Jasper Rees

Oxford. A glum afternoon in early spring, 2000. Tourists clogging the city’s arteries. On a terrace overlooking the river Cherwell, a tour guide finishes her spiel and shepherds a flock of pensioners on to the next destination. A lone squat figure with silver hair, leaning contemplatively against the railings, doesn’t budge. The tour guide is convinced he’s one of hers. A quick cup of tea, she says kindly, and it’s back on the coach to Stratford.

Read more...

Thatcher: We are an impersonator

Jasper Rees

Mrs Thatcher famously presided over a huge rise in unemployment, but down the years she kept a large sorority of impersonators (and one male one) off the dole. She was lucky with her mimics, who included some of the great actresses of the age, and never luckier than when Meryl Streep (pictured below) inhabited the role of Britain's first female Prime Minister.

Read more...

10 Questions for Actor Michael Emerson

Adam Sweeting

He may not be a household name, but Michael Emerson became a household face by virtue of his role as the sinister Benjamin Linus in Lost, the leader of the group called the Others on the show’s hallucinatory South Pacific island. Emerson, born in Cedar Rapids, Iowa in 1954, was already a theatre veteran with a string of intermittent TV performances to his credit.

Read more...

Opinion: How soon is too soon for plot spoilers?

Jasper Rees

Last November, for the 25,000th time on the stage, the actor playing Sergeant Trotter in The Mousetrap stepped forward during the curtain call and asked members of the audience not to reveal the play's surprise ending to others. To do so would, by implication, spoil the whodunnit for future audiences. Over the years the odd clever-clogs stand-up has disobeyed the injunction. And whoever wrote the play’s Wikipedia entry also gives the game away.

Read more...

Television: 10 of the Best from 2012

Adam Sweeting

Far be it from me to try to impose shape or meaning on the past 12 months of television. You'd need teams of statisticians and psephologists to have any chance of drawing conclusions from the whirling cosmos of TV, and its infinite variety of soaps, shopping, repeats, weird sports, ailing current affairs programmes, forgotten comedies and obscure dramas. Instead, in a spirit of shameless subjectivity, here are 10 of my favourite performances from 2012.

Read more...

Larry Hagman, 1931-2012

Adam Sweeting

It was the Seventies/Eighties supersoap Dallas which made Larry Hagman a household name, and his portrayal of the amoral, unscrupulous oil baron JR Ewing became a benchmark character in TV history. Hagman's performance also helped to make Dallas one of the highest-rated shows of all time, and the question "Who shot JR?" (which somebody did at the end of series three) became the focus of intense global speculation.

Read more...

Great Danes: Sofie Gråbøl and Søren Sveistrup

Demetrios Matheou

There was a time when we’d have felt withdrawal symptoms over the absence of The West Wing or The Sopranos, or The Wire; invariably it was American television that had its hooks in us. Now it’s Danish. And it’s time for a fix. Cue The Killing, which returns to add its own particular chill to the winter.

Read more...

Good Cop: From Page to Screen

Stephen Butchard

On Thursday the BBC will screen the opening episode of the television drama Good Cop. I finished writing it back in August 2010, and on the strength of that story and ideas for a total of four episodes, the series was green-lit in February 2011. We completed filming (pictured below) by the end of December 2011, then came post-production. Now at last we have our transmission date and it will be broadcast to the world.

Read more...

Pages

Subscribe to theartsdesk.com

Thank you for continuing to read our work on theartsdesk.com. For unlimited access to every article in its entirety, including our archive of more than 10,000 pieces, we're asking for £3.95 per month or £30 per year. We feel it's a very good deal, and hope you do too.

To take an annual subscription now simply click here.

And if you're looking for that extra gift for a friend or family member, why not treat them to a theartsdesk.com gift subscription?

latest in today

theartsdesk at the Australian Festival of Chamber Music - st...

North of Brisbane, south of Cairns and a short boat trip from the turquoise waters around the Great Barrier Reef, Townsville is the site of a...

h Club 100 Awards: Video games - pioneers with heart and sou...

Technical innovators, industry role models and champions of inclusivity make up the shortlist of nominees in the...

CD: Ariana Grande - Sweetener

This may be tempting fate, and minutes after publication of this she'll probably be arrested for stabbing a dog or something, but...

Prom 45, Capuçon, Orchestre de la Suisse Romande, Nott - sci...

Who is the greatest British conductor in charge of a major orchestra? It's subjective, but my answer is not what you might expect. Jonathan Nott...

theartsdesk on Vinyl 42: Flaming Lips, Blacklab, Juno Reacto...

Initially, this month’s theartsdesk on Vinyl began with the sentence after this one, but it's so dry readers might drowse off, so...

Jake Shears, Concorde 2, Brighton review - a blitz of glitz

One of the biggest crowd roars of the night comes right at the start when Jake Shears runs onstage. He is wearing a grey top hat, a white tail-...

Disenchantment, Netflix review - Matt Groening show has prom...

It’s an event that only comes around once a generation: a new ...

Edinburgh Fringe 2018 reviews: Rosie Jones/ Marcus Brigstock...

Rosie Jones ★★★

There are two versions of Rosie Jones, she tells us; one nice, one not so nice. And who...