Category Archives: Celebrities

A compilation of Miriam Margolyes’ appearances on the Graham Norton Show

I don’t know why I don’t ever see her on any other chat shows, though I expect it’s because Graham Norton is the only one who would have her but the fact is Miriam Margolyes is one of the funniest people I have ever watched on television.

This week, she appeared on the show for a third time with the American rapper Will.i.am. Within four minutes she had already uttered the kind of phrase only people the same age as Prince Philip can be expected to get away with: ‘I don’t know many black people outside of show business’. It doesn’t stop there and Will.i.am clearly thought she was hilarious, because well, she is.

Every single time Margolyes makes an appearance on Norton’s sofa, she can be relied upon to tell a story that no ordinary person would even dream of imparting. Some of her best bits can be seen below.

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When Amy Came To Dingle

This week, it was at last confirmed that Amy Winehouse, who died last August, had done so as a result of massive alcohol poisoning. The following short documentary was aired in Ireland about a month ago and features a small gig Winehouse did in a town called Dingle, on the Westernmost tip of Europe.

The presenter is none other than my favourite Irish DJ, Annie Mac and the stripped down style of the music shows Amy at her very best, just before she became one of the most famous, and hunted, women in the world. Between songs, snippets of the interview she did after the gig are both fascinating and tragic, given the downward spiral her life went into almost immediately afterwards.

It is worth nothing that, since her death, her final album Back to Black has become the bestselling British record of the 21st century.

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Filed under Celebrities, Ireland, Music

This is how much you’re being lied to…

A couple of examples of how misled we are by the magic of airbrushing and photoshop.

I particularly like how Penelope Cruz, if anything, looks more beautiful in the non-photoshopped version. I also much prefer the un-tampered-with image of Madonna. She should have used the original, it would have made more of a statement.

 

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Amy, Amy, Amy

 

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Back when she was ‘just Kate’

I found these amusing:

More here

(Thanks, Z!)

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Women of the week

Catherine, Duchess of Cambridge (obviously). Friday was the day Britain fell in love with their future Queen.

Adele – she seems to be the absolute craic.

Tara Palmer-Tomkinson. Say what you like, hers was the best hat at the royal wedding.

The child on the balcony at the wedding:

*UPDATE – I love it when Fox News gets it this wrong:


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Hugh Grant – my new favourite celebrity

I’m not Hugh Grant’s biggest fan. All the quintessential, foppish, clumsy Englishness gets to me almost as much as the fact that so many women seem to unquestioningly adore him. Nonetheless, after reading the beginning of his article in today’s New Statesman, I had to hand it to him – he’s an enviably cunning so-and-so. The done-upmanship displayed was absolutely terrific.

For those readers not up to speed on the goings on of the British press, the News of the World newspaper illegally bugged the phones of celebrities (including the Royal Family). Grant was also a victim of the newspaper’s scandalous behaviour and therefore jumped at the opportunity to turn the tables. He encountered the former News of the World journalist, Paul McMullan, who unwittingly spoke of how his editor-in-chief had known of the fact that his paper was illegally hacking people’s phones. The cherry on top, however, is the style in which Grant writes the piece. You can veritably hear his voice as you read it:

When I broke down in my midlife crisis car in remotest Kent just before Christmas, a battered white van pulled up on the far carriageway. To help, I thought. But when the driver got out he started taking pictures with a long-lens camera. He came closer to get better shots and I swore at him. Then he offered me a lift the last few miles to my destination. I suspected his motives and swore at him some more. (I’m not entirely sympathetic towards paparazzi.) Then I realised I couldn’t get a taxi and was late. So I had to accept the lift.

He turned out to be an ex-News of the World investigative journalist and paparazzo, now running a pub in Dover. He still kept his camera in the car’s glove box for just this kind of happy accident.

More than that, he was Paul McMullan, one of two ex-NoW hacks who had blown the whistle (in the Guardian and on Channel 4’s Dispatches) on the full extent of phone-hacking at the paper, particularly under its former editor Andy Coulson. This was interesting, as I had been a victim – a fact he confirmed as we drove along. He also had an unusual defence of the practice: that phone-hacking was a price you had to pay for living in a free society. I asked how that worked exactly, but we ran out of time, and next thing we had arrived and he was asking me if I would pose for a photo with him, “not for publication, just for the wall of the pub”.

I agreed and the picture duly appeared in the Mail on Sunday that weekend with his creative version of the encounter.He had asked me to drop into his pub some time. So when, some months later, Jemima asked me to write a piece for this paper, it occurred to me it might be interesting to take him up on his invitation.

I wanted to hear more about phone-hacking and the whole business of tabloid journalism. It occurred to me just to interview him straight, as he has, after all, been a whistleblower. But then I thought I might possibly get more, and it might be more fun, if I secretly taped him, The bugger bugged, as it were.

‘The bugger bugged’ – what a line!

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