Tag Archive: London


Daniel Radcliffe, the actor famous for playing Harry Potter, turned 23 on Monday.

Starring in the eight film adaptations of the best-selling book series by J.K. Rowling, Radcliffe truly brought the title character to life. Since his role as the famous boy wizard, the young actor has forged an unconventional path towards a serious acting career, starring in everything from a twisted psychological play to a romantic comedy.

Radcliffe has embodied and shaped our understanding of Harry Potter. From reading the books, I had always envisioned Harry as stubborn, impulsive, burdened by a Messiah complex, moody when older, yet always courageous and loyal. In the movies, Radcliffe portrays all of these traits, but adds innocent charm to the boy wizard. Harry seems steady, serious, and strong-willed when he battles Voldemort’s incarnations in the first films, but the actor’s wide blue eyes, short stature, delicate cheeks, and circular glasses remind us how young the wizard is. Even in the bleak final film, Radcliffe steps towards Voldemort shakily, hesitantly. The actor physically emphasizes how much Harry is playing everything by ear – an important detail that makes him so relatable and believable as a teenage hero.

Post-Potter, Radcliffe has proven himself to be beyond maturity. Like the overburdened wizard himself, Radcliffe seems to have grown up too fast — he has already forced himself to stop drinking to prevent alcoholism. Yet professionally, he has not become a degenerate child star. On the contrary, Radcliffe has committed himself to a serious acting career. He has strayed from typical teen films; his post-Potter films include horror/thriller The Woman in Black and Beat poetry film Kill Your Darlings. In his theater debut, he won critical praise for the psychological stage drama Equus, in which he portrayed a 17-year old that blinds six horses with a spike and he went completely naked for an episode of religio-erotic worship to a horse. But he is not a fun-killer — he has starred in the comedic musical How to Succeed in Business Without Really Trying and will be in the upcoming romantic comedy, F Word. Rather than devising a career strategy, Radcliffe is true to his artistic interests, choosing only quality projects that grab his attention. His creative spirit goes beyond drama — as a bookworm, he spends most of his money on books, he writes poetry, and he publishes short stories; he appreciates underground and punk rock music.

Radcliffe, with his definitive portrayal of Harry Potter, was the heart of the Harry Potter films. While he has yet to separate entirely from the wizard, Radcliffe has proved that he is becoming a serious artistic force.


Daniel Radcliffe film sets new horror record

Daniel Radcliffe in The Woman In Blackhttp://www.telegraph.co.uk/culture/film/film-news/9110695/Daniel-Radcliffe-film-sets-new-horror-record.html


J.K. Rowling has deal for new novel for adults


NEW YORK (AP) — Adult fans of J.K. Rowling can rejoice: She has a new novel coming, for grownups.

The kids will have to wait and see.

The author of the mega-selling “Harry Potter” series has an agreement with Little, Brown in the United States and Britain to release her first adult novel, the publishers announced Thursday. The title, release date and details about the book, long rumored, were not announced. A neighbor of Rowling’s in Edinburgh, author Ian Rankin, tweeted Thursday that he thinks Rowling has written a mystery novel.

“Wouldn’t it be funny if J.K. Rowling’s first novel for adults turned out to be a crime story set in Edinburgh?” Rankin wrote. “My word yes.”

Her seventh and final Potter story came out in 2007, and in recent years the British author has said that she was working on an adult book and on a Potter encyclopedia. Rowling’s Potter books, which broke sales records around the world, were published by Bloomsbury in Britain and Scholastic in the U.S. Rowling will now share the same publisher with Stephenie Meyer, whose “Twilight” series at least partially filled the gap opened by the conclusion of the Potter stories.

“Although I’ve enjoyed writing it every bit as much, my next book will be very different to the Harry Potter series, which has been published so brilliantly by Bloomsbury and my other publishers around the world,” Rowling, 46, said in a statement released by Little, Brown. “The freedom to explore new territory is a gift that Harry’s success has brought me, and with that new territory it seemed a logical progression to have a new publisher. I am delighted to have a second publishing home in Little, Brown, and a publishing team that will be a great partner in this new phase of my writing life.”

Rowling’s agent, Neil Blair, would not disclose financial details of the deal but said there had been no auction. He said Thursday that Rowling was remaining with Bloomsbury in Britain for the Harry Potter books.

“As her new book is for a different audience, and marks a new literary direction for her, it made sense to separate the two and for her new book to be launched by a different publisher,” said Blair.

Blair became Rowling’s literary agent last year when she left the Christopher Little Literary Agency, where Blair had worked. Bloomsbury said its 15-year relationship with Rowling “remains stronger than ever” — and new editions of the seven novels were on the way. Some 450 million copies of the seven Potter stories are in print and the books have been translated into 74 languages. A billion-dollar movie franchise, starring Daniel Radcliffe as the young wizard, ended last year.

“We are pleased to announce that as part of our long term strategy for Harry Potter we intend to publish illustrated editions of all seven Harry Potter books in a rolling program from 2013 onwards in addition to our partnership on e-books with the Pottermore website,” the publisher said in a statement. In the U.S., Scholastic spokeswoman Kyle Good noted that Scholastic didn’t publish adult books.

“We will continue to publish her children’s books in the U.S.,” Good said Thursday.

Any Rowling book would seem a guaranteed million seller, although it’s questionable that her new novel will have the same mass appeal as Potter. Adult authors from E.B. White to Sherman Alexie have nicely managed the transition to writing for young people but, once a writer is defined as a children’s author, the transition can be tricky. Winnie the Pooh creator A.A. Milne, a successful playwright in his early years, once confessed that he was forced to say “goodbye to all that” after his beloved books about the bear and friends. Margaret Wise Brown, author of the classic “Goodnight Moon,” tried for years to write stories for The New Yorker.

Daniel Handler of “Lemony Snicket” fame and Ann Brashares, author of the “Sisterhood of the Traveling Pants” novels, are among the recent popular writers for children who have had limited success as adult writers.

But Rowling does begin with one advantage: The Potter books had an enormous following among readers of all ages and she is widely credited with revealing to publishers that children’s books were no longer just for the young. Meyer’s vampire novels and Suzanne Collins’ “Hunger Games” trilogy also have caught on with both parents and kids. Meyer herself wrote an adult book, “The Host,” a best-seller in 2008.

“It would just be cool if my existing fans liked it,” Meyer told The Associated Press in 2008. “And I hope to get some new readers who would never go into the YA (Young Adult) shelves.”

Beth Puffer, director of the Manhattan-based children’s bookseller Bank Street Bookstore, said she’d have to see the novel before deciding where or whether to stock it.

“I assume if it’s written for adults, it’s not appropriate for children,” said Puffer, who added that she might stock the book in a section for ages 14 and up. “There are a lot of former children and young adults who grew up with Harry Potter and they would likely be an audience for her new book. You also have all the adults who loved the Potter books.”

One of Rowling’s most passionate fans, Melissa Anelli, said she was beyond herself “with excitement.” Anelli, 32, runs a leading Potter/Rowling fan site, http://www.the-leaky-cauldron.org .

“J.K. Rowling is simply a great writer, and no matter what she applies her talents to, we will anticipate and enjoy it,” Anelli wrote in an email. “I’m also so intrigued by this process: What will happen as the world’s greatest children’s/YA author navigates the new publishing landscape and publishes for a new audience?”

Rowling’s novel will be available in both print and electronic formats. The author held out for years on allowing the Potter books to come out digitally, but announced in 2011 that Potter e-books would be sold through her own “Pottermore” website. The books were supposed to become available last fall, but have been delayed until sometime this year.


Associated Press writer Jill Lawless in London contributed to this report.

The Woman In Black

Today was the release of The Woman in Black. Like many Potter fans I was excited to see Daniel Radcliffe on the big screen. Even though he wasn’t portraying the boy wizard that many of us grew up with it was still exciting to see him once again. The Woman in Black is awesome it’ll keep you at the egde of your seat. I highly recomned that you go and see this film. So go and see The Woman in Black if you mised it tonight.


Hey check this site out!


LONDON (AP) — Writer J.K. Rowling and actress Sienna Miller gave a London courtroom a vivid picture on Thursday of the anxiety, anger and fear produced by living in the glare of Britain’s tabloid media, describing how press intrusion made them feel like prisoners in their own homes.

The creator of boy wizard Harry Potter told Britain’s media ethics inquiry that having journalists camped on her doorstep was “like being under siege and like being a hostage.” Miller said years of car chases, midnight pursuits and intimate revelations had left her feeling violated, paranoid and anxious.

“The attitude seems to be absolutely cavalier,” Rowling said. “You’re famous, you’re asking for it.”

The pair were among a diverse cast of witnesses — Hollywood star Hugh Grant, a former soccer player, a former aide to supermodel Elle Macpherson and the parents of missing and murdered children — who have described how becoming the focus of Britain’s tabloid press wreaked havoc on their lives.

Rowling said she was completely unprepared for the media attention she began to receive when her first book, “Harry Potter and the Philosopher’s Stone,” became a sensation. The seven Potter books have sold more than 450 million copies, spawned a hit movie series and propelled Rowling from struggling single mother to one of Britain’s richest people.

“When you become well-known … no one gives you a guidebook,” she said.

Prime Minister David Cameron set up the inquiry amid a still-unfolding scandal over illegal eavesdropping by the News of the World tabloid. Owner Rupert Murdoch closed down the newspaper in July after evidence emerged that it had illegally accessed the mobile phone voice mails of celebrities, politicians and even crime victims in its search of scoops.

More than a dozen News of the World journalists and editors have been arrested, and the scandal has also claimed the jobs of two top London police officers, Cameron’s media adviser and several senior Murdoch executives.

It has also set off national soul-searching about the balance between press freedom and individual privacy.

Rowling, 46, said media interest in her began shortly after the publication of her first novel in 1997 and soon escalated, with photographers and reporters frequently stationed outside her home. She eventually moved after stories and photographs revealed the location of her house.

“I can’t put an invisibility cloaking device over myself or my house, nor would I want to,” Rowling said. But, she added, “it feels threatening to have people watching you.”

Rowling said she had always tried to keep her three children out of the media glare, and was outraged when her eldest daughter came home from primary school with a letter from a journalist in her backpack.

“I felt such a sense of invasion,” Rowling said. “It’s very difficult to say how angry I felt that my 5-year-old daughter’s school was no longer a place of complete security from journalists.”

By the time her younger children were born in 2003 and 2005, Rowling said, the scrutiny was “like being under siege and like being a hostage.”

She also described how, early on in their relationship, her now-husband Neil Murray gave personal details over the phone to a reporter who was pretending to be a tax official. An article about him duly appeared in a tabloid paper.

“That was a not-very-nice introduction to being involved with someone famous,” Rowling said.

Rowling told the inquiry she had gone to court or to Britain’s press watchdog more than 50 times over pictures of her children or false stories, which included a claim by the Daily Express that unpleasant fictional wizard Gilderoy Lockhart had been based on her first husband.

Before the final Potter book appeared in 2007, a reporter even phoned the head teacher of her daughter’s school, falsely claiming the child had revealed that Harry Potter died at the end, in an apparent bid to learn secrets of the plot.

Miller, who became a tabloid staple when she dated fellow actor Jude Law, said the constant scrutiny left her feeling “very violated and very paranoid and anxious, constantly.”

“I felt like I was living in some sort of video game,” she said.

“For a number of years I was relentlessly pursued by 10 to 15 men, almost daily,” she said. “Spat at, verbally abused.

“I would often find myself, at the age of 21, at midnight, running down a dark street on my own with 10 men chasing me. And the fact they had cameras in their hands made that legal.”

The 29-year-old actress told the inquiry that a stream of personal stories about her in the tabloids led her to accuse friends and family of leaking information to the media. In fact, her cell phone voice mails had been hacked by the News of the World.

Miller, the star of “Layer Cake” and “Alfie,” was one of the first celebrities to take the Murdoch tabloid to court over illegal eavesdropping. In May, the newspaper agreed to pay her 100,000 pounds ($160,000) to settle claims her phone had been hacked.

The newspaper’s parent company now faces dozens of lawsuits from alleged hacking victims.

Also testifying Thursday was former Formula One boss Max Mosley, who has campaigned for a privacy law since his interest in sadomasochistic sex was exposed in the News of the World.

Mosley successfully sued the News of the World over a 2008 story headlined “Formula One boss has sick Nazi orgy with five hookers.” Mosley has acknowledged the orgy, but argued that the story — obtained with a hidden camera — was an “outrageous” invasion of privacy. He said the Nazi allegation was damaging and “completely untrue.”

Mosley said he has had stories about the incident removed from 193 websites around the world, and is currently taking legal action “in 22 or 23 different countries,” including proceedings against search engine Google in France and Germany.

“Invasion of privacy is worse than burglary,” Mosley said. “Because if somebody burgles your house … you can replace the things that have been taken.”

High-profile witnesses still to come include CNN celebrity interviewer Piers Morgan, who has denied using phone hacking while he was editor of the Daily Mirror newspaper.

The inquiry, led by Judge Brian Leveson, plans to issue a report next year and could recommend major changes to Britain’s system of media self regulation.

Rowling said that she supported freedom the press, but that a new body was needed to replace the “toothless” Press Complaints Commission.

“I can’t pretend that I have a magical answer,” she said. “No Harry Potter joke intended.”


Leveson Inquiry: http://www.levesoninquiry.org.uk/

Jill Lawless can be reached at: http://twitter.com/JillLawless


Sporty, eligible bachelors at the ready: the
lovely Pippa Middleton is reported to be back on the market.

She is unlikely to remain there for long. The
Duchess of Cambridge’s foxy little sister was the world’s most sought after
woman even when she had a boyfriend.

Singer Justin Timberlake, who has dated
Hollywood stars such as Cameron Diaz, admits to drooling over her.

‘We American males love Pippa… I’m going to
sound like a sleazeball!’ he told Esquire magazine. Websites and blogs, some
with unprintable names, are dedicated to her outfits, pert figure and spirited
exercise regime. And just to raise temperatures even further, newspaper reports
suggest she has split from her boyfriend, the handsome, square-jawed,
cricket-loving Alex Loudon, ‘after a blazing row at a wedding’.

Pippa is reported to have walked out on the
31-year-old Old Etonian after a string of rows. Now they are ‘barely


Friends of the couple have confirmed to the
Mail that they did, indeed, have a ‘blazing and very public’ argument at the
wedding of Pippa’s old Edinburgh University friend Humphrey Bowles in Whitby,
North Yorkshire, in September.

‘Pippa had been on the dancefloor without Alex
all night and he didn’t appear happy. They could clearly be heard arguing hammer
and tongs,’ says a source.

However, members of Pippa’s social circle
emphasised last night that the split must be very recent because most of them
were unaware of it.

And it may yet be that there is  a
reconciliation (perhaps over  the socially complex Christmas holidays). But the
feeling among their set seems to be that there is no long-term future for the

Oh dear. Not so long ago, Loudon was said to
be on the brink of proposing and hunting for an engagement ring on the sly.

William and Kate and the Middleton parents
were known to approve of the solid, good-natured financier, and all was looking
rosy for the nearly-weds.

Pippa had been presented with keys to his flat
in Parsons Green, South-West London, where she spent many nights away from her
own pad in Chelsea. And she was a regular guest at his parents’ beautiful Kent

In September, Pippa turned 28 and celebrated
her birthday at a low-key Italian restaurant with just Alex and the Cambridges.
She is just the right age, you might think, to accept a proposal. So, what went

It seems that Alex — who comes from the sort
of English gentry family who try to avoid being in the papers apart from their
births, marriages and deaths — struggled with Pippa’s sudden and unexpected

Apart from a brush with publicity thanks to a
brief stint with the England cricket team, Alex was content to live the
privileged and anonymous life of the upper classes.

But, last April, his girlfriend went from
being a pretty Berkshire Sloane to Her Royal Hotness, her silk-clad derriere
admired by billions around the world.

And not for the first time in the history of
love, the relationship couldn’t take the change in status.

There was a brief split in June (later denied)
when Pippa was much photographed on mini-breaks with her good friend George
Percy, the future Duke of Northumberland.

But tantalising though it was to speculate on
the Middleton parents having ‘double duchess’ daughters, Pippa soon got back
together with Alex and it looked as if marriage might be on the cards.

But after the reunion, whenever they were
photographed together, Loudon looked excruciatingly uncomfortable in the
spotlight. Unlike Pippa or, for that matter, Percy. Pippa and Alex are firmly in
the ‘wedding zone’ — that time between the ages of 28 and 32 when public school
and university-educated types must spend most of their  weekends at a wedding,
hen or stag night.

Typically, among this flurry of fascinators
and champagne-fuelled flirtation, the question of marriage tends to be thrust to
the forefront of a couple’s minds as they turn

The relentless recitals of those wedding
standards Sonnet 116  (‘Let me not to the marriage of true minds . . .’) and 1
Corinthians (‘Love is patient, love is kind . . .’) took their toll on Pippa and

They had that huge row (topic unrecorded) at
the Whitby wedding. Could the subtext have been that Alex was keen on marriage,
but Pippa wasn’t so sure?

You can see the emotional dynamic in those
perky pictures of Pippa a couple of weeks ago in her low-cut red dress being
raised aloft by children’s party entertainer Charlie ‘Sharky’ Astor at the
Boodles Boxing Ball in London.

A man already feeling uncomfortable about his
girlfriend’s globally publicised desirability could be forgiven for feeling
irritated by those photos. Another well-bred, tall Old Etonian lifting her up so
enthusiastically? A lesser man than Loudon might have been tempted to reward
‘Sharky’ with a shiner.

bliss in Anglesey and Kensington — they are
hardly out every night — and Prince Harry is flying helicopters and drinking in
Arizona, Pippa has become absolutely ‘it’ among the social set who congregate
around the young royals.

‘In any given night in Chelsea, you’ll find
Pippa having dinner with socialites Astrid Harbord, Arabella Musgrave or other
girls from that royal inner circle,’ says one member of that scene.

After that revealing red dress, Pippa wore a
more covered up (though still tight-fitting and fetching) frock to her last big
public outing, the Too Many Women charity event at Petersham Nurseries near
Richmond upon Thames.

There, Pippa danced with her friend Katie
Readman (who works for the Issa design label favoured by Kate) and sat next to
Carphone Warehouse founder David Ross, who has a long-term girlfriend and knows
the Middletons from holidays on Mustique.

So Pippa is socially feverish — but what next?

Though she still juggles working for her
parents’ Party Pieces company with her job at Table Talk, the London caterers,
there were recent rumours of a book deal for Pippa to write a party planning

How To Get My Figure might have sold more, but
you can see that a Party Pieces tie-in publication is a safer prospect and has
logic to it.

We can expect lots of jolly imaginative
suggestions about how to turn your kitchen into a faux rainforest with just a
few banana cupcakes. She can, of course, expect a huge advance.

As for men, if she does embark on 2012 as a
single girl, she is likely to want to follow her sister’s example and not leave
marriage too late.

Timberlake, Daniel Radcliffe, singer Joe Jonas
of the Jonas Brothers and others who have expressed their admiration publicly
can dream on — Pippa will probably choose her future husband from a small, safe,
inner circle of courtiers.

Suitors must be well-connected, rich,
anti-drugs, Conservative- leaning, keen on the country, but be presentable in

Blue blood combined with an entrepreneurial
streak — something that is fashionable and Middleton-style — would be good, as
would a love of sports, particularly tennis, skiing and triathalon.

A past involving university pranks and
high-jinks — wrapping yourself in loo roll and downing vodka from the bottle,
for example — is fine, but any kind of brush with the law involving illegal
substances is not.

It would be easier for everyone concerned if
the suitor was from the royal court, because having a future king as
brother-in-law will be a daunting option for many.

The last time Alex Loudon vanished, George
Percy bravely stepped up to the role of Her Hotness’s escort.

The future Duke of Northumberland — Pippa’s
flatmate at Edinburgh University and now an energy entrepreneur — eagerly rowed
the brunette from Bucklebury around a lake in Madrid and took her to the tennis
at Queen’s Club in London.

It is said by their friends that the chemistry
isn’t there, but that could be a cover story.

Her other Edinburgh flatmate, Lord ‘Ted’
Innes-Ker, a golfer and duke’s son, is promisingly single.

Otherwise there is William’s friend Thomas Van
Straubenzee, who works for a smart estate agent, or the handsome, smiley William
Van Cutsem, a chartered surveyor and property entrepreneur, whose father is an
old friend of Prince Charles.

Then, of course, there is the Boodles Ball
chap who danced with her, Charlie ‘Sharky’ Astor, who is half of children’s
entertainers Sharky and George. That might not be a lifelong career choice, but
for a girl who is rumoured to be about to get a million-pound advance for
writing about children’s parties, it could be helpful. And he is an

Racier options include banking heir James
Rothschild — though he is seeing Paris Hilton’s sister Nicky — and Arthur
Landon, heir to the ‘White Sultan’, the British military commander who once
arranged a coup in Oman.

Arthur has a £200  million fortune and royal
connections, but he, too, has a girlfriend.

Other men who would be suitable but are
currently taken include Richard Branson’s handsome son Sam and brewing heir
James Tollemache.

Should their relationships not lead to
marriage, they could be good options for Pippa. ‘I know some people who will
make themselves single for Pippa,’ says one girl.

Whatever her choice, for now the
Chelsea/Clarence House royal set will be rallying around, inviting her for
supper and consoling her with masses of attention.

Well-meaning Alex Loudon will carry on carving
out his quiet  City career and Pippa will enjoy her blossoming social life and
try  to work out how to enjoy her burgeoning fame without being accused of

After all, she is inundated by freebies from
everyone from fashion houses to leading sporting events. Of course, she has to
be careful about what she accepts, but as that possible book deal shows, the
winnings will be there for her.

And at some point — if it is not to be Alex
Loudon — a husband will be, too



Fashion Faceoff: Emma Watson vs. Chloe Moretz


Basic black can be so boring! Starlets Emma Watson and Chloe Moretz instead opted to show off their fun fashion sense in a plaid McQ mini dress just four days apart. So … it’s time for us to judge just who wore it better.

Emma Watson, 21, posed in the frock while attending the GQ Men of the Year Awards in London on September 6. “Harry Potter’s” Hermione shook things up by pairing the design with a leather jacket, a tulle tutu, and a pair of Christian Louboutin pumps.

Chloe Moretz, who’s only 14, wore the same dress at the 2011 Toronto Film Festival in the same week. The “Kick-Ass” actress made the look her own by accessorizing with black heels and socks, which have much the same effect as ankle boots.

Both beauties win props for daring to wear the printed garment, but only Emma had the style savvy to rev up its volume with a tutu and add edginess with her outerwear. For that, I declare her the winner. There is consolation for Chloe, though, who proves in this ensemble that in years to come, she’ll definitely be one to watch on the red carpet. Do you agree?


LONDON (AP) — For years, Harry Potter author J.K. Rowling and her family had honored a French ancestor who they believed was a World War I war hero.

But the best-selling author has now discovered that her family had been mistaken about the true identity of her great-grandfather.

Rowling, 46, has recorded a television program with the BBC that shows her coming to terms with the revelation that her family had confused Louis Volant, a war hero awarded with the Legion d’honneur for his bravery during the Battle of Verdun, with her real great-grandfather, who had the same name and also fought for France.

Rowling told the BBC magazine published Tuesday Radio Times that the experience was an upsetting and emotional one. She said taking part in her genealogy research made her so emotional that she cried several times.

“There were a lot of big surprises, some wonderful, and one rather upsetting,” she said in an interview.

“However, I went into the program wanting the truth, no matter what it was, because I knew so little about my French ancestry, and I don’t regret a moment of it. I loved the whole experience,” she added.

When Rowling was awarded the Legion d’honneur for her services to literature in 2009, she described her pride being the second winner of the honor in the family, and how her accomplishments could not compare to the bravery of her ancestor and men like him.

She said that she has undertook the project because her mother Anne Volant, who died in 1990, was very interested in her French roots but never got the chance to explore them.

“A huge motivation in looking into my family history is my mother. It’s very much bound up in that loss,” she said.

The BBC show, called “Who Do You Think You Are?” will be broadcast later this month.


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