Friday, July 19, 2013

I've Got A Bike, You Can't Ride It If You Like, Cos It's Mine. It Cost Me A Hundred & Ninety Notes. You Can Look At It, Though

Yer actual Kenneth Branagh his very self has revealed that he is 'a major fan' of Doctor Who. Well, of course he is, he's a smart chap is Sir Ken. The BAFTA-winner was asked during a panel with the Gruniad Morning Star if he would ever consider playing The Doctor's arch-nemesis The Master. 'I am a long-time hide-behind-the-sofa-in-the-early-Doctor-Who-in-the-1960s-fan,' yer actual Branagh his very self claimed. He added on the subject of his love of the BBC's long-running popular family SF drama: 'The Master I remember was played brilliantly by an actor called Roger [Delgado]. I don't think I can get him out of my mind. Is there a leader of the Cybermen? Or even just a funny Cyberman?' Well, the ones in Revenge Of The Cyberman had flares so, they were quite funny.

An oversize edition of the Doctor Who Comic is due for release in the last week of 2013, to celebrate the programme's fiftieth anniversary. IDW Publishing and BBC Worldwide have announced that the special issue will be written by yer actual Keith Telly Topping's old mucker Paul Cornell (now, there's a lad that's done well for himself in life), with features art by Jimmy Broxton. The one-shot story will chronicle a strange force which sends the TARDIS into our own universe. In his travels, The Doctor will meet one of his biggest fans, a ten-year-old girl who will make him face his status as a fictional character. The comic will also feature The Doctor coming face-to-face with the actor who portrays him, Matt Smith. IDW and the BBC have already launched a new series from writer Andy Diggle to mark the occasion.
And, speaking of yer actual Matt Smith, he has admitted that it was not 'an easy decision' to leave Doctor Who. The actor was speaking at Entertainment Weekly's Brave New Warriors panel at Comic-Con in San Diego. Smudger described his time on Doctor Who as 'a privilege' adding: 'But I think, when you gotta go, you gotta go.' He continued: 'It wasn't an easy decision to come to, but I don't know… you can't play it forever.' Matt added that he will 'absolutely' continue to watch the BBC's popular family SF drama following his exit in the 2013 Christmas special. 'I'm a big fan [of the show], as well as being in it,' he said. 'The show will get bigger and better and just keep going - and I'll follow it and they'll get a brilliant actor [to replace me]. It carries on - it's lovely, you're part of a legend that doesn't die.'

Huge Jackman will make an appearance on Top Gear this weekend. The actor took part in the popular BBC2 motoring show's regular Star in a Reasonably Priced Car feature on Wednesday. Jackman tweeted a photo of himself with The Stig on the Top Gear racetrack, saying that he had thoroughly enjoyed his time but was not allowed to reveal how fast he had completed the lap. During his post-race interview with Jezza Clarkson his very self, Jackman is said to have shared a joke about his significant manhood, according to Entertainmentwise. Clarkson apparently admitted that he wouldn't ever consider flashing his Charlie in public because he 'has a small penis', it is claimed. When Jeeza looked for sympathy from the actor, saying 'You know what I mean?' Huge, his very self, jokingly replied: 'No.' Although, maybe he wasn't joking and he has, indeed, got a positively towering throbbing dong. And, on that bombshell ...
Londonderry doctor Leah Totton is Lord Sugar-Sweetie's new business partner after winning BBC1 show The Apprentice. She received a two hundred and fifty thousand smackers investment for her cosmetic procedures business after Lord Sugar-Sweetie told her 'you're hired' in Wednesday's final. She said that she did not expect Lord Sugar-Sweetie to become a client of hers any time soon: 'I think his face is fine as it is,' she claimed. Err ... no is isn't. Anyway, the twenty five-year-old triumphed over Luisa Zissman, who had pitched an online wholesale baking supplies business. Totton plans to offer anti-ageing skin treatments, including chemical peels and dermal fillers, at a chain of clinics where she hopes to raise the standards of the beauty industry with her medical credentials.

Totton will open a high street chain of cosmetic treatment clinics, but there will be furrowed brows at the BBC after The Apprentice final had a seven-year low overnight rating of fewer than six million viewers. This year's final averaged 5.7 million viewers between 8pm and 10pm on Wednesday. Not only was it down on last year's final, when it was watched by 6.1 million viewers overnight, it was also a seven-week audience low for the current series. This year's ninth series climax was also the lowest audience for an Apprentice final since it was first screened on BBC1 in 2006. Its second series, won by Michelle Dewberry, was also watched by 5.7 million viewers. Wednesday night's audience may not have been helped by an 8pm start time - an hour earlier than its normal slot - and an extended two-hour running time. Last year's final was also extended to two hours but aired later, between 8.30pm and 10.30pm on a Sunday night. The BBC has already commissioned a tenth series of The Apprentice, to be screened next year, but the spin-off show The Young Apprentice has been axed. Sugar-Sweetie his very self said at the launch of this year's series: 'I think The Apprentice has got longevity in it as long as we can continue to find interesting and different characters. At the end of the day, it is down to the candidates if it is interesting TV.' Earlier on Wednesday, Your Money, Their Tricks secured 3.19m at 7pm, while Wheelers, Dealers & Del Boys was seen by 2.71m at 10.35pm. On BBC2, Restoration Home attracted 1.61m at 8pm, followed by documentary The Real White Queen with 1.91m at 9pm. ITV's The Zoo continued with 3.49m at 8pm. Ray Mears's new series Close Encounters interested 2.41m at 9pm. On Channel Four, Twenty Four Hours in A&E brought in 2.14m at 9pm, while the third Run episode dipped to eight hundred and sixty four thousand punters at 10pm. Channel Five's new series The Real Myra Hindley gathered nine hundred and fifty two thousand viewers at 8pm.

Nick Hewer and Margaret Mountford's BBC1 show topped Thursday's ratings outside of soaps, according to overnight figures. The Apprentice regulars second and final episode of We All Pay Your Benefits dropped around eight hundred thousand viewers week-on-week to 3.77 million at 9pm. Earlier, Cherry Healey's new show Britain's Favourite Supermarket Foods attracted 3.19m at 8pm. One-off documentary Meet the Landlords was seen by 2.38m at 10.35pm. On BBC2, Simon Reeve's Indian Ocean had an audience of 1.25m viewers at 8pm, followed by Hebrides: Islands on the Edge with 1.76m at 9pm. Mock the Week was seen by 1.80m at 10pm. ITV's Married to the Job appealed to 2.52m at 8.30pm, while returning documentary series The Briefs interested but 1.91m punters at 9pm. A thoroughly rotten night for ITV, soaps aside, something we seem to be saying more and more these days. On Channel Four, Supersize Vs Superskinny appalled five hundred and ninety one thousand viewers at 8pm. First Dates entertained seven hundred and eight thousand at 9pm. The final episode of four-part drama Run attracted six hundred and twenty thousand at 10pm. Channel Five's The Hotel Inspector Returns had an audience of 1.29m at 9pm. Big Brother's latest episode was seen by 1.43m at 10pm. BBC3's coverage of England women's wretched, knackerless departure from Euro 2014 against a very good French side pulled in six hundred and forty five thousand viewers at 7pm.

Yer actual Benedict Cumberbatch and Martin Freeman his very self recorded a video messages which was shown on Wednesday evening during Sherlock's Comic-Con panel in San Diego. Benny began his segment by feigning confusion at what he was there to promote. He then went on to jokingly reveal just exactly how it was that Sherlock faked his own death in the series two finale. Yer actual Steven Moffat also confirmed at Comic-Con, when asked, that series four of Sherlock is definitely on. Scheduling permitting, and all that. 'If it doesn't suddenly become an enormous flop, then of course we'll keep doing it.'
And, speaking of Comic-Con, yer actual Gillian Anderson and David Duchovny his very self reunited at a Comic-Con X-Files panel on Thursday. The duo celebrated the cult show's twentieth birthday alongside creators and writers Chris Carter, Vince Gilligan, Howard Gordon and John Shiban at the convention in San Diego. Duchovny and Anderson both declared an interest in bringing Fix Mulder and Dana Scully back for another big screen outing (especially as the last one was so ruddy dreadful), while Carter said that seeing the fan response at Comic-Con was inspiring. 'You need a reason to get excited about doing it again and this [crowd response] is very exciting,' claimed Carter. The lead actors both talked about the fan interest in their characters' love lives and will-they-won't-they romance. When asked by one fan what they would do in a real date, naughty Gillian said: 'Have sex.' Duchovny added: 'And then, maybe, have dinner.'
Yer actual Keith Telly Topping, meanwhile, has purchased a bike this week dear blog reader - for reasons far too complicated to go into here (although, if you're a Facebook regular, you'll probably know the full story). The reason that yer actual Keith Telly Topping he mentions this purchase at this particular point in the blog is that he's decided to christen the bicycle Gillian, after Gillian Anderson her very self. Because, you know, he's looking forward to the joy of mounting and riding her, roughly, over the next few years. Here's Gillian (no, the other one) in the lush, well-manicured, gardens of Stately Telly Topping Manor.
Gillian's position in the house, if you will, is also shown here. If you're wondering how she is, seemingly, defying the laws of gravity, let me tell you, dear blog reader, it's all done with mirrors ... and a couple of coil locks keeping her attached to the banister. See, this was the one aspect of 'Hey, Keith Telly Topping, you should get yourself a bike' that yer actual Keith Telly Topping didn't take into consideration before he went ought and bought it, whilst living in a one bedroom upstairs Stately Manor. Where the hell does actually he park her?!
For everybody not in the UK, just in case you didn't know, we're having our first hot summer in about seven years and, seemingly, everyone's gone mad. It's currently as hot as a Turkish wrestler's jock-strap, dear blog reader. And, the heatwave warning has been raised to 'level three' by the Met Office for the North-West. It said that the hottest weather was expected over Western England on Friday, with the East becoming cooler. Level three warnings are in place for the South West and the West Midlands, but warnings for South-East England and London have been reduced to level two. The warning alerts healthcare services to help those in high-risk groups such as the elderly and young children. Meanwhile, HM Coastguard has issued safety advice to swimmers and sailors after call-outs in the past month were up by nearly a quarter compared with the same period last year - as more people take to the coast to enjoy the sunshine. From 15 June to 18 July this year, it dealt with two thousand eight hundred and fifty nine incidents, up six hundred and sixty eight on the same period in 2012. In other developments, a woman has died after being pulled from the sea at Ingoldmells, near Skegness; a calf which got stuck in mud as it tried to cool off by the River Hamble in Lower Swanwick, was freed by firefighters, so that was good news. Well, for the calf, anyway; teachers have renewed calls for statutory maximum temperatures in which they can carry on teaching, as the heat continues to soar in classrooms; walkers and climbers in Scotland are being warned to guard against potentially fatal dehydration, heatstroke and heat exhaustion as temperatures soar; a fifteen-year-old boy has died after falling into the River Roe near Limavady in County Londonderry; in Hampshire, gritting lorries have been out on the roads - spreading a mixture of stone chips and dust - to deal with melting road surfaces. The Highways Agency say that it will not have gritters on standby for major routes in the South East. It remains confident that road surfaces can deal with the heat and a mountain fire at Wattsville, Caerphilly, of dry grass and bracken has been extinguished. Level three alerts are triggered when threshold temperatures have been reached for one day and the following night and the forecast for the next day has a greater than ninety per cent confidence level that the day threshold temperature will again be met. If the heat health watch level rises to four, it is considered 'a national emergency.' Seriously. Politicians have urged people to be on their guard in 'soaring temperatures.' The threshold temperature for the North-West is 30C. Eastern areas will see cooler conditions on Friday, with London and South-East England reduced to a level two warning, and the East of England reduced to a level one warning - the minimum state of vigilance. Level two warnings are also currently in place for the East Midlands and Yorkshire and the Humber. These alerts are triggered by a sixty per cent or higher chance of the threshold temperature again being reached on the second day. The North-East remains on a level one warning although yer actual Keith Telly Topping can confirm that it's pretty damn steaming in and around Stately Telly Topping Manor right at the moment. Scotland, Wales and Northern Ireland are not included in the alert system. Why, no one knows. The Met Office said that it would become 'less hot' for a time over the weekend, but temperatures are expected to increase again early next week with a likelihood of level three being reached again in some areas. It is the UK's first prolonged heatwave since 2006, with six consecutive days of temperatures above 30C. Research by the London School of Hygiene and Tropical Medicine has estimated there might have been between five hundred and forty and seven hundred and sixty extra deaths in England and sixty to one hundred in Wales due to the hot weather. Wednesday was the hottest day of the year, with 32.2C (89.9F) recorded at Hampton.
Chef and presenter Nigella Lawson - she has her knockers - is to bring a version of her hit US cookery show, The Taste, to the UK. The ten-part series, commissioned by Channel Four, will air in 2014. Each week, contestants will try to avoid elimination by competing in group and individual challenges. Lawson will be joined on the show by chef Anthony Bourdain and French kitchen guru Ludo Lefebvre, who both feature as mentors and judges with her in the US series. The show will mark Lawson's return to Channel Four for the first time in more than ten years. She got her TV break on the channel in 1999 with Nigella Bites, after gaining recognition with her cookbooks and newspaper column. She also worked on a chat show for ITV and has made numerous shows for BBC2 since 2006, including Nigella Express. Channel Four's head of formats Dominic Bird said he was 'thrilled' Nigella was returning to the channel. 'The Taste promises to be a hugely exciting and compelling competition with stellar talent and exceptional cooking at its heart,' he added. Lawson and her husband Charles Saatchi confirmed earlier this week that they are to divorce. It followed the publication of photographs showing Saatchi with his hands wrapped around Lawson's throat at a London restaurant in June.

Channel Four has announced the cast for its new historical drama New Worlds. Game of Thrones actor Joe Dempsie, The Fall's Jamie Dornan, Alice Englert and The White Queen star Freya Mavor take the lead roles in the new four-part series. Set during The Restoration in the 1680s, New Worlds follows four young people on both sides of the Atlantic as they 'commit their lives to a fairer future with blood, passion and urgency.' The series - written by Peter Flannery and Martine Brant and directed by Charles Martin - follows on from The Devil's Whore and rejoins the series character Angelica (played by Eve Best) as she strives to protect her daughter Beth (Mavor) from a country on the brink of chaos. Channel Four's Head of Drama, yer actual Piers Wenger said: 'New Worlds is a compelling four-part drama capturing the political struggles of the period following the English Civil War both at home and overseas. The combination of Peter and Martine's scripts and Charles Martin's direction has attracted a diverse and glittering cast and we're greatly looking forward to seeing their work brought to the screen.' The project will start filming in the UK this month and is expected to be shown in 2014.

Sky Living has picked up the US thriller The Blacklist in an exclusive deal with Sony Pictures Television. The NBC show stars James Spader as Red, a former world's most wanted criminal, who has mysteriously turned and relinquished his criminal contacts. In exchange for his co-operation he insists on working with only rookie FBI agent Elizabeth Keen, played by Law & Order: Los Angeles's Megan Boone. Homeland's Diego Klattenhoff joined the series as FBI field agent Donald Ressler, while 90120's Ryan Eggold and Man of Steel actor Harry Lennix also feature. The show has landed the plum spot on NBC and will be broadcast on Monday nights after The Voice when it starts in September. The thirteen-part series will receive its UK premiere shortly after it first appears in the US. The director of Sky Living, Antonia Hurford-Jones, said: 'I couldn't be more excited to be bringing the series that everyone was talking about at the LA screenings to Sky Living. The Blacklist is an absolutely outstanding show with an exceptionally talented actor at its centre and will be the perfect addition to our brilliant existing series such as Elementary and Hannibal, as well as the UK original commissions that we are launching this autumn, such as The Face and Dracula. I can't wait for our customers to see it.'

Downton Abbey's Huge Bonneville will compete against Homeland actor Damian Lewis to be named lead actor in a drama at this year's EMMY awards. The actors will go up against Breaking Bad's Bryan Cranston, Kevin Spacey for House of Cards, Mad Men's Jon Hamm and Jeff Daniels for The Newsroom. American Horror Story: Asylum scored the most nominations with seventeen including best mini-series. Oscar winner Jessica Lange is also nominated for her role in the horror. Game of Thrones was recognised in sixteen categories, while Liberace biopic Behind the Candelabra received fifteen mentions. Michael Douglas, who plays the flamboyant pianist, will go head-to-head with his on-screen partner Matt Damon to be named best lead actor in a mini-series or movie. It is the first major nomination for the HBO production which will not qualify for the US film awards season because it was made for television, although it was released in cinemas outside of the US. Douglas and Damon are up against Toby Jones for his portrayal of Alfred Hitchcock in The Girl, yer actual Benedict Cumberbatch in Parade's End and Al Pacino, recognised for his performance as Phil Spector in a HBO biopic. Helen Mirren, who plays Spector's lawyer Linda Kenney-Baden, has also been nominated in the lead actress in a mini-series or movie category. HBO, which received one hundred and eight nominations in total, tweeted that it was 'honoured' to be the most-nominated network for the twelfth consecutive year. House of Cards became the first programme only available online to receive a nomination for best drama series. The Netflix political saga - a remake of the acclaimed 1990 BBC series - earned nine nominations including lead actress for Robin Wright as well as Spacey's nomination. 'There's been so much talk about whether the series would break through - would the Academy be able to recognise a series being discovered in such a new way? The fact that we not only did that, but that we got nine nominations is an incredible acknowledgement of the work we've done,' Spacey told industry publication Variety. Revived series Arrested Development, which was also produced by Netflix, had three nominations including lead actor in a comedy for Jason Bateman. Mad Men's Elisabeth Moss, who missed out on the best actress award to Homeland actress Claire Danes in 2012, received two nominations. Her performance as Peggy Olson in Mad Men was shortlisted in the leading actress category alongside Michelle Dockery for Downton Abbey, Nashville's Connie Britton, Kerry Washington in Scandal and Vera Farmiga in Bates Motel. Moss was also recognised for her leading role in director Jane Campion's acclaimed drama Top Of The Lake, which scored eight nominations including outstanding mini-series or movie. The BBC co-produced series will challenge the Sigourney Weaver drama Political Animals along with Phil Spector, The Bible, Behind The Candelabra and American Horror Story: Asylum. Downton Abbey received twelve nominations in total, including best drama series and supporting acting nominations for Dame Maggie Smith and Jim Carter. The opening ceremony of the London 2012 Olympics was also nominated for four awards including outstanding special class programme - with Danny Boyle nominated for art direction. Another BBC co-production, The Girl, which centres on Alfred Hitchcock and his troubled relationship with actress Tippi Hedren, received four nominations. As well as Jones, Imelda Staunton was recognised for outstanding supporting actress for her role as Alma Hitchcock. In the comedy category, the final season of long-running series 30 Rock scored the most nominations with thirteen, including best comedy. Creator and star Tina Fey and co-star Alec Baldwin both picked up nominations in the leading comedy acting categories. Last year's big winner, Modern Family, was shortlisted for twelve awards including best comedy series and acting nominations for five of its stars. Comedian Jimmy Kimmel, who hosted the EMMY award ceremony last year, will compete against Saturday Night Live for best variety series. Cat Deeley scored her third consecutive nomination for best reality host. Breaking Bad's Aaron Paul, who won best supporting actor in a drama series last year, presented the nominations announcement. He stands to win his third EMMY for his role as Jesse Pinkman, should he beat co-star Jonathan Banks, Game of Thrones star Peter Dinklage, Bobby Cannavale from Boardwalk Empire, Homeland's Mandy Patinkin and Jim Carter. The ceremony will be held in Los Angeles on 22 September, hosted by Neil Patrick Harris.
Billionaire tyrant Rupert Murdoch has attempted to slither back from claims that the police inquiry into alleged corrupt payments by journalists at his newspapers to public officials is 'totally incompetent.' But in letters to two MPs, the billionaire tyrant - whom nobody is scared of anymore - claimed that the police response was 'disproportionate.' Billionaire tyrant Murdoch claimed that while he did not 'doubt the police's professionalism', the inquiry had 'taken too long.' He admitted to making 'overly-emotional comments' in a secretly-recorded meeting broadcast on Channel Four News. The letters came after MPs demanded that he explain himself and his comments made at a Sun staff meeting. A recording of the meeting held in March was obtained by the Exaro website and aired on Channel Four News earlier this month. In it, billionaire tyrant Murdoch - whom, no one is scared of anymore - complained about 'totally incompetent' police officers and said Operation Elveden was 'the biggest inquiry ever, over next to nothing.' In a letter sent on Wednesday night to John Whittingdale, chairman of the Culture, Media and Sport select committee, Murdoch squirmed: 'Even without a reliable transcript before me, I am sure I made overly emotional comments about the MPs at the March meeting.' Billionaire tyrant Murdoch gave evidence to the committee in 2011 when he was questioned about phone-hacking allegations. Murdoch added: 'I do not doubt the police's professionalism but, from my layman's perspective, the police approach to these matters since I met with you has in some respects appeared to be disproportionate.' And, in a letter to chairman of the Home Affairs Select Committee Keith Vaz, billionaire tyrant Murdoch wrote: 'I accept that I used the wrong adjectives to voice my frustration over the course of the police investigation. But I had been hearing for months about pre-dawn raids undertaken by as many as fourteen police officers, and that some employees and their families were left in limbo for as much as a year and a half between arrest and charging decisions.' He added: 'I am in no position to judge the competence of the investigation and should never have done so. But I do question whether, over the last two years, the police have approached these matters with an appropriate sense of proportion, and with regard for the human cost of delay. My own lay view is that it has been more than thorough, indeed it has in some respects appeared to be excessive.' The letters claim that News Corp has handed over more than half-a-million documents to the Metropolitan Police, devoting more than one hundred and eighty thousand man-hours to the work. Allegations of phone-hacking at the disgraced and disgraceful Scum of the World thrust the newspaper's owners, News Corp, and its journalists directly into the spotlight. A separate Scotland Yard investigation, Operation Elveden, is looking into claims of inappropriate, corrupt and illegal payments made to police and other public officials by journalists. News Corp defended billionaire tyrant Murdoch - whom nobody is scared of anymore - when the secret recording emerged, claiming that he had merely shown 'understandable empathy' with staff. One or two people even believed them. Things are certainly looking a bit bleak for billionaire tyrant Rupert Murdoch - whom nobody is scared of anymore - at the moment. He can't even keep all of the underlings at Sky News in line, it would seem. One wonders how long Niall Paterson will retain his position as Media and Technology Correspondent after that effort?

The Sun's royal correspondent, Duncan Larcombe, has pleaded not guilty at the Old Bailey to conspiracy to commit misconduct in public office. Larcombe is accused of paying John Hardy, a former Colour Sergeant in the Scots Guards, for information for stories published in the Sun. Hardy and his wife, Claire, also pleaded not guilty to the same charge. Hardy was a cadet instructor at Sandhurst military college at the time of the alleged offences. The Metropolitan Police's Operation Elveden is running alongside Operation Weeting and Operation Tuleta. These are the investigations into allegations of phone hacking, and computer hacking and other privacy breaches and assorted nefarious skulduggery and malarkey.

JK Rowling has said she feels 'very angry' after finding out her pseudonym Robert Galbraith was leaked to the press by a legal firm. And, you wouldn't like to see her when she's angry, dear blog reader. It's a sight to see, trust me. Ooo, tetchy and pure dead vexed, so she is. In fact, so much so that someone is likely to get a good old fashioned smacking for such bad naughtiness.
John Kaye Cooper is to step down from his position as Controller of Entertainment at ITV at the end of 2013. Kaye Cooper leaves the role after five years in order to 'spend more time with his family' but plans to remain in the industry on a freelance basis. The TV mogul has managed ITV hit shows such as The X Factor, Britain's Got Talent, Ant And/Or Dec's Saturday Night Takeaway and Surprise Surprise. In 2011, he helped the channel secure an exclusive ten-year deal for The Royal Variety Performance. He is also responsible for commissions such as The Cube, Take Me Out, Piers Morgan's Life Stories and Catchphrase - the early version of which was the first show he ordered while he was Controller of Entertainment at TVS in the 1980s. Kaye Cooper said: 'The last five years have been some of the most exciting and enjoyable in my career. ITV is a tremendously creative place to work. It has been a privilege to work with Peter Fincham and Elaine Bedell on so many terrific shows, with some brilliantly talented artistes, and the very best, innovative production teams and independent companies. It will be a huge wrench to leave so many good friends and colleagues but I am looking forward to spending more time with my grandchildren who all live abroad. But I'm still incredibly passionate and enthusiastic about entertainment and big events, so I am planning to work freelance as a consultant or executive producer in between the travelling, and I am looking forward to working with ITV again in the future.' ITV Director of Entertainment and Comedy Elaine Bedell said: 'ITV entertainment owes much to John Kaye Cooper. His name has been inseparable from many of ITV's hit series over the years - and many producers owe their own success to his support and inspiration. Despite having been responsible for more hit shows than most people in television, he has remained one of the most enthusiastic and energetic. He is also, indisputably, one of the nicest. We will miss him hugely in commissioning - but look forward to working with him again.'

The son of Marc Bolan, is suing a UK music publisher for over a million smackers, alleging the company has violated copyright laws. Rolan Seymour Feld filed a court case in Los Angeles against Westminster Music Limited, claiming he is the sole owner of the rocker's hits including 'Get It On' and 'Jeepster'. He alleges that the company did not renew its contract to use Bolan's songs. Bolan died in a car accident in 1977. He formed the rock band T-Rex in 1967, gaining success in the 1970s with hits such as 'Hot Love', 'Twentieth Century Boy', 'Metal Guru', 'Telegram Sam' and 'Children of the Revolution'. In the court documents filed last week, Feld, who was a toddler when his father died, claimed that Bolan transferred copyright to Westminster for one year in a document signed in October 1968. He alleges the company 'never timely' provided his father with written notice that it wished to extend the term, making him - as Bolan's only heir - the sole owner and administrator of his father's songs in the US. 'In an attempt to cover up their conduct and mislead the public as to the true owner and administrator of the United States copyright in and to each of the Compositions, Defendants falsely registered with the Copyright Office a claim to the renewed and extended term of copyright for each of the Compositions,' court documents allege. The general terms of copyright in the US is ninety five years from publication. However, for musical works written before 1978, the term is divided into an initial term of twenty eight years followed by an extended or renewal term lasting an additional sixty seven years. Rights to the latter term belong to the living author unless he or she has entered into an agreement transferring those rights. When an author dies during the initial term, extended rights automatically belong to the author's heirs. In court documents, lawyers claim Feld 'has been damaged in an amount that is not as yet fully ascertained but which Plaintiff believes exceeds two million dollars.' London-based Westminster Music Limited changed its name from Essex Music International Limited in 1981, but is understood to still be trading under that name in the US.

Liam Gallagher his very self is taking legal action against the New York Post, a spokesman has confirmed. The publication, which reported that he had fathered a child following a one-night stand, named the mother as a celebrity journalist. The ex-Oasis singer, who now fronts the band Beady Eye, has three children from three different relationships. He married former All Saints singer Nicole Appleton in February 2008. His first marriage, to yer actual Patsy Kensit, ended in 2000. Gallagher, who started playing music with his brother Noel in 1991, was in Ibiza this week to perform with Beady Eye.

Spinner Graeme Swann claimed five for forty four as Australia were all out for one hundred and twenty eight in reply to England's first-innings of three hundred and sixty one shortly after tea on day two of the second Ashes test at Lord's. With a lead of two hundred and thirty three, England skipper Alastair Cook declined to enforce the follow-on and returned to the middle alongside opening partner Joe Root. On an extraordinary day when sixteen wickets fell, England themselves stuttered badly at the start of their second innings, losing Alastair Cook, Jonathan Trott and Kevin Pietersen cheaply to close on thirty one for three. However, with a lead of two hundred and sixty four and seven wickets in hand, England will remain confident of batting a demoralised Australia out of the match and all but guaranteeing a two-nil lead in a five-match series which the tourists must win to reclaim the Ashes. Australia's paltry total was their lowest at Lord's since 1968, thanks to a batting display littered with errors. Australia were largely to blame for their own demise as they crashed to one hundred and twenty eight all out. The tourists' batting line-up lasted only 53.3 overs in total to undo the earlier good work of Ryan Harris, who finished with five for seventy two in England's first innings to get his name on the honours board. Former Australia seamer Glenn McGrath on BBC Test Match Special whinged: 'Very poor, very disappointing scorecard, not sure where Australia can go from here.' To quote Nick Heyward: 'Is it down to the lake, I fear?!' Australia openers Shane Watson and Chris Rogers actually made a positive start, putting on forty two in good time with Watson racing to thirty, including six fours. But Watson's exit to the final ball before lunch, LBW to Tim Bresnan in familiar fashion, was the start of a collapse as they lost ten wickets for eighty one runs in just forty one overs. Umpire Kumar Dharmasena raised the finger to Bresnan's appeal and his judgment was confirmed by Hawkeye after Watson - just as he had in the second innings when LBW to Stuart Broad at Trent Bridge last week - impetuously burned one of Australia's two reviews for the innings with an optimistic referral. Swann got rid of Rogers, also LBW, for fifteen with an outrageous full toss that the Australian batsman simply missed. Had the left-hander reviewed umpire Marais Erasmus' decision, it would have been overturned as it was comfortably missing leg stump. Possibly because of Watson's earlier wasting of a review, however, Rodgers simply walked. Phil Hughes (who scored but one) did review his caught-behind dismissal off Bresnan (two for twenty eight) three overs later but there was no clear evidence either way and Snicko - not part of the DRS system - later indicated that there had been a clear edge. Usman Khawaja, recalled in place of Ed Cowan at number three for this match, was dropped by Jonathan Trott at slip from Swann's bowling but that reprieve was only temporary and he was on his way for fourteen after holing out to Kevin Pietersen at mid-off giving the same bowler the charge. Swann added a third wicket, that of Steve Smith (two) to a reaction catch by Ian Bell at short-leg off the glove, and Broad (one for twenty six) joined the party in the next over by sending Australia skipper Michael Clarke - who had batted fluently for twenty eight amid tall he carnage going on around him - to an LBW verdict which he was unable to review even if he had wanted. And the tourists' miserable afternoon session was completed when Ashton Agar (two) was run out at the non-striker's end after coming three-quarters of the way down before being sent back by his partner Brad Haddin. From ninety six for seven at tea, Australia's tail folded quickly. Peter Siddle (two) gave James Anderson (one for twenty five) his first wicket of the innings by steering an edge to Swann at second slip. Proving that whilst Siddle is a fine bowler -as he showed later when picked up England's three second innings wickets - he's not only got a mush that looks, as some have claimed, like a cross between an Orangutan and a really ugly Orangutan but he sometimes bats like one too. Bloody good bowler, mind - it's important to stress that under the universal laws of Karma. Haddin (seven) was also held at slip, by Trott off Swann, after toe-ending a big heave across the line and Harris (ten) was last to go, Pietersen taking an over-the-shoulder catch at mid-on to give Swann the sixteenth five-wicket haul of his test career - and his second at Lord's. England resumed on two hundred and eighty nine for seven at the start of day two but Bresnan immediately edged through to wicket-keeper Haddin to depart for seven off the bowling of Harris. The same combination also accounted for night-watchman Jimmy Anderson, who having edged the previous delivery in between Haddin and Watson at first slip for four duly nicked the next straight to the wicket-keeper. From then on Swann - coming out to bat at the unusual position of number eleven in the order - and Broad decided to go down swinging during a tenth-wicket stand of forty eight from forty balls. Their fun eventually came to an end when Broad was caught behind off the bowling of James Pattinson, for thirty three from twenty nine deliveries. Swann, meanwhile, finished unbeaten on twenty eight from twenty six balls, his lively knock including five boundaries and a blow to his right forearm, which kept him off the field for the early stages of Australia's reply before he returned to good effect.

Bert Trautmann, the German goalkeeper who won the FA Cup with Sheikh Yer Man City in 1956, has died at the age of eighty nine. Bert is best remembered for playing the final seventeen minutes of City's Cup final win against Birmingham City with a broken neck. He played more than five hundred times for City between 1949 and 1964, having first arrived in Britain as a prisoner of war. Bery, who had survived two heart attacks this year, died near Valencia in Spain on Friday. Francis Lee, the former City player who later became the club's chairman, said: 'He was one of the all-time great keepers. I knew Bert wasn't keeping well for the last six months but it has still come as a shock that he has passed on. I made my début as a sixteen-year-old for Bolton against City with Bert in goal and I scored a header after a quarter of an hour. It convinced him, he later told me, that it was time to pack up.' Born in Bremen in 1923, Bert fought as a paratrooper in World War II winning the Iron Cross for bravery before being captured on the Russian front. Bert escaped captivity and returned to serve in France, but, after escaping from the French resistance, he was captured for a final time by the British Army and interned near Ashton-in-Makerfield in Lancashire. Remaining in England following the the war in 1945, Bert worked on a farm and began his English football career with non-league St Helens Town. He signed for City in October 1949, but, with memories of the war still raw, he initially faced hostility from some supporters not only of City but also the teams they played. However, his bravery in the 1956 FA Cup final saw Bert become something of a national hero after he broke several vertebrae in his neck when he collided with Birmingham's Peter Murphy with City leading 3-1. Bert said that he was unaware how serious the injury was and played the rest of the match, only learning he had broken his neck three days later. 'I don't think he knew he'd broken his neck, not until they had the scans and X-rays,' Lee added. 'There was no way he was coming off because there were no subs in those days. He was as brave as a lion. He was on the Western Front as well the Eastern Front, so he saw a bit of action and a broken neck was not going to put him off.' Bert made a full recovery and, following his retirement in 1964, went on to manage Stockport County. He also helped the German Football Association promote football development in Africa and Asia. In 2004, he was awarded the OBE for his work with the Trautmann Foundation, which promoted sportsmanship and exchange programmes between young and amateur players in Germany and the UK.

The world is being asked to look up on Friday and smile in the direction of Saturn. The Cassini probe, in orbit around the gas giant, is going to take a picture of Earth, and the imaging team wants everyone to wave and smile. Because of the great distance to Saturn, our home will appear as a mere pixel in the final photo. But Cassini scientist Carolyn Porco says that it is a moment to 'celebrate life on the Pale Blue Dot.' Waving time - the period when the spacecraft's cameras will be operating - starts at 22:27 and ends at 22:42 in the UK. These timings include the eighty minutes it will take reflected light from the surface of the Earth to travel the nearly 1.5 billion kilometres to reach the outer Solar System. Porco's Ciclops imaging team will be producing a large mosaic of Saturn and its ring system on Friday. Earth will appear as small speck in the lower-right of the final picture. It is likely to be several days before the first images are processed and released. The probe snapped a similar mosaic in 2006. On that occasion, Earth was positioned in the upper-left of the frame. But Porco says that the set-up six years ago was 'not ideal.' For the re-shoot, she plans to use Cassini's highest resolution camera, and the most appropriate filters to capture Earth 'in natural colour.' More than that, however, she says, people on Earth will know this time they are on camera, and that offers everyone the opportunity to participate. Porco hopes the picture will be reminiscent of the famous 'Pale Blue Dot' image captured by the Voyager-1 probe in 1990. That was a picture which she helped organise with the astronomer and popular science writer Carl Sagan. He memorably described the Earth as looking like a 'mote of dust suspended in a sunbeam', such was its apparent insignificance in the vastness of space. Inspired in part by the Cassini team's plans, scientists working on the Messenger probe at Mercury will also be picturing Earth on Friday and Saturday. Messenger will see Earth as it scans the skies for any previously unrecognised objects that might be circling the innermost world. Parts of the Earth not illuminated in the Cassini images, including all of Europe, the Middle East and Central Asia, will appear illuminated in the Messenger pictures.

Which calls for an appropriate Keith Telly Topping's 45 of the Day, I think. What about this one.

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