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  1. National Theatre launches new season
  2. Build-up to the National Television Awards
  3. Brian Blessed back on stage after collapse

Live Reporting

By Sarah Jane Griffiths and Ian Youngs

All times stated are UK

Get involved

So long, farewell

Sarah Jane Griffiths

Entertainment reporter, BBC News

Auf wiedersehen, good night. I hate to go and leave this pretty site.

Sorry. I'll just say thank you for joining us today!

That's it for now but you can still tweet us your views on today's stories

@BBCNewsEnts. We'll be back tomorrow from 08:30 GMT - see you then.

NTAs countdown

Voting has closed for tonight's National Television Awards and the internet is starting to get very excited.

The Radio Times has put together

15 fascinating facts and memorable moments from the NTAs - including the moment David Tennant announced he was quitting Doctor Who during his acceptance speech.

Mel B and Kardashian mum Kris Jenner

have flown in from LA for the ceremony, according to the Daily Mail.

And organisers have announced that the Landmark Award will go to Comic Relief, which is celebrating its 30th anniversary - with trustee Lenny Henry set to pick up the award.

Sheridan Smith is up for best drama performance for playing Cilla Black, while her ITV biopic Cilla battles Downton Abbey, Doctor Who and Sherlock in the drama category. But

she tweets tonight is all about the host, Dermot O'Leary.

Sheridan Smith tweet

And Geordie Shore star Charlotte Crosby

is similarly excited.

Charlotte Crosby tweet

Lord Sugar is

less hopeful, though.

Lord Sugar tweet

News round-up

Sam Smith
Getty Images

Here are a few more stories making waves today:

  • The Grammys has announced that British star Sam Smith will perform at the ceremony on 8 February. He's joining Usher, Pharrell Williams and Miranda Lambert. Common and John Legend will perform their song Glory from the film Selma. Performers including Madonna and Ed Sheeran had already been announced.
  • The £91m cost of running the BBC's London headquarters has been labelled "staggering" by the chair of the Public Accounts Committee following an audit,
    reports Broadcast. But
    the BBC tweets that the building is "not comparable" to other buildings.
  • The Loose Women panel will wear black and orange at tonight's National Television Awards - the colours of the Action Against Cancer charity, which Lynda Bellingham supported,
    according to The Mirror.
  • English National Opera chairman Martyn Rose
    has stepped down as the company attempts to deal with a £5m cut to its annual Arts Council England subsidy.

Ellie joins The Voice

Ellie Goulding

Ellie Goulding's just one of the celebrities who have been signed up as mentors for the forthcoming season of The Voice in the US.

US Weekly reports that Ellie will be helping out team captain Adam Levine, while Nick Jonas is on Team Christina Aguilera, Meghan Trainor is on Team Blake Shelton and Pharrell Williams has Lionel Richie to help coach his team.

Read the full story.

Big Weekend announcement

Radio 1 tweets: "In 2006 Radio 1's Big Weekend came to Dundee and 19 year old Paolo Nutini performed! We'll reveal this year's location on Friday."

Radio 1 Tweet

Older and Scully

X Files
20th Century Fox

Following Monday's news that Fox hopes to reboot The X-Files, David Duchovny has revealed he'd be up for bringing back FBI Special Agent Fox Mulder.


told USA Today that he's "more than happy and excited to bring it back and do it again with Gillian [Anderson] and [series creator] Chris [Carter]".

The hit supernatural series ran from 1993-2002, with Anderson playing Fox's sceptical partner Dana Scully.

But don't get too excited - the 54-year-old is only interested in a limited run. "We're all old, we don't have the energy for a full season," he said with a laugh.

Take the throne

- Broadcast Magazine

Queen Elizabeth II pictured in 1984 with Margaret Thatcher and five previous Prime Ministers

The Crown, Netflix's £100m biopic of Queen Elizabeth II, is due to start filming in the UK this July, says director Stephen Daldry.

Based on hit play The Audience, which starred Dame Helen Mirren, the drama centres on the Queen's relationships with her various prime ministers, including those pictured above.

Casting details have not been announced, but

Deadline reported last year that Clare Foy had been approached for the lead role.

Read the full story (subscription required).

The Bean strikes back

Rowan Atkinson as Mr Bean

Rowan Atkinson is bringing Mr Bean out of retirement for a one-off sketch on this year's Comic Relief.

The comedian has only filmed one TV sketch as the hapless manchild since the original series ended in 1995, although he has appeared in two films and several adverts.

Speaking to Radio 1's Newsbeat in 2011,

Atkinson said he wanted to lay the character to rest.

"I've always regarded Mr Bean as an ageless, timeless figure," he said. "I don't want him to particularly grow old, and if I carry on playing him then he's going to get older, whether we like it or not."

Comic Relief airs on Friday 13, March.

Blessed relief

via Twitter

Lots of you have been contacting us about the news that

Brian Blessed collapsed on stage, had a cup of tea, then returned to finish his performance of King Lear.

Heather tweets: "As long as he's ok, that's the main thing."

Mara M tweets: "Feel better soon, Brian!! Big love xxx"

Sarah Gorman tweets: "Brian Blessed is a monstrous wonder."

Arem Brooks adds: "A lot of world problems might be solved with a cup of tea."

You'll be glad to hear that we've spoken to the Guildford Theatre Company, who tell us Brian is fighting fit and was back on stage giving it his all on Tuesday night.

Mini Kanye

- via Twitter

Kim Kardashian and husband Kanye West

Want to see a 12-year-old Kanye West reciting a poem at school? Of course you do!

His wife Kim Kardashian saw fit to post

this little beauty from YouTube on
her Twitter feed, showing Kanye (demonstrating impressive stage presence for his age) performing a verse dedicated to Martin Luther King.

Kanye wrote the poem - called His Name Means Love - himself.

Kardashian said she wished she had managed to post the clip on Monday, which was Martin Luther King Day in the US.

Music venues ban selfies

- Billboard Magazine

The O2 arena, the Brixton Academy, the Birmingham Academy and Wembley Arena have all banned "selfie sticks" on health and safety grounds.

"Our advice is don't bring them and stick with the tried-and-tested use of an arm," said a spokesperson for Wembley.

Read the full story here.

Via email

Tim Masters

Entertainment correspondent, BBC News poster
National Theatre

National Theatre director Rufus Norris said Damon Albarn's new musical is "stuffed with exuberant and infectious songs".

It's part of this year's Manchester International Festival, where it will be performed from 29 June - 12 July, before visiting London's National Theatre in November and Paris in 2016.

Elvis' leathers

Elvis Presley
Elvis Presley Enterprises

Elvis Presley's black leather suit - worn for his famous 1968 TV Comeback Special - is being added to the Elvis At The O2 Exhibition in London from Thursday 12 February, for a limited time of two months.

The TV special featured Elvis' first live stage performances in over seven years and led to Elvis busting back into the charts with Suspicious Minds and The Wonder of You, before his record-breaking shows in Las Vegas.

Elvis' American Eagle jumpsuit is being sent packing back to Graceland to make space for the leathers.

Via email

Tim Masters

Entertainment correspondent, BBC News

Some other key highlights from today's National Theatre launch:

  • A new play by Patrick Marber about football. Rufus Norris describes it as a "savage and tender piece about the beautiful game."
  • Anne Marie duff will star in Husbands and Sons, an adaptation of a trilogy of DH Lawrence mining dramas. From October.
  • Shakespeare's As You Like It will be staged at the Olivier Theatre in November, the play's first production at the NT since 1980.

And National Theatre screenings of Frankenstein, King Lear and Othello are being made available free to every secondary school in the UK.

It's hoped they will "inspire a new generation of future theatre makers".

Festival fever

- BBC 6 Music

Kelis performing at the 6 Music festival

Last year they brought us the likes of Kelis, Elbow and Damon Albarn. The

excellent news from our friends at BBC 6 Music today is that their festival is coming back for a second year.

You'll need to listen to Lauren Laverne's show from 10am next Tuesday 27 January to find out more.

BBC 6 Music festival

In the meantime, check out

highlights from last year's shindig in Manchester.

Via email

Tim Masters

Entertainment correspondent, BBC News

Rufus Norris revealed that he had last night signed off a print of the big screen version of London Road, due in cinemas later in 2015.

"It's the best verbatim musical I've seen this week," he quipped.

Incoming National Theatre chief executive Tessa Ross told the BBC the film's box office was unlikely to have an impact on the NT's finances.

Luther to leave London?

Idris Elba as Luther

Luther is the latest UK show set for a US remake - after TV bosses at Fox greenlit a pilot of the show.

The Wrap reports it's one of several new drama pilots going into production, along with a Frankenstein reboot, but it is "cast-contingent", meaning it won't get made unless they can find the right star.

So will fans of The Wire get another chance to hear Idris Elba, who starred in the UK version, crack out an American accent?

Unlikely, apparently, as he's currently only signed up as an executive producer.

However, don't forget the troubled detective will be back for a UK double bill later this year. The two 60-minute episodes start filming in March.

When the special

was announced last November, creator Neil Cross said: "Luther is coming back where he belongs. Back to the BBC. Back to London. And back to work."

Via email

Tim Masters

Entertainment correspondent, BBC News

National Theatre director Rufus Norris says Chiwetel's casting in Everyman comes at a time "when the Oscar nominations are stuffed with actors who have learned their craft on subsidised stages".

Live Earth concerts

Mark Savage

- Entertainment reporter

Kevin Wall, Al Gore and Pharrell Williams
Michel Euler

Over at the World Economic Forum in Davos, Al Gore, Pharrell Williams and producer Kevin Wall have just announced a second instalment of the Live Earth concerts, which aim to combat climate change.

The first shows, in 2007, featured stars such as Madonna, Metallica, Bon Jovi, the Black Eyed Peas and The Police at venues around the world, including London's Wembley Stadium.

This year's sequel will take place 18 June in Paris, New York, Brazil, South Africa, China and Australia.

More than 100 artists will take part, it is promised, although no names have been revealed yet.

Pharrell, who is the project's creative director as well as the owner of a very fetching scarf, added enigmatically: "Instead of just having people perform, we literally are going to have humanity harmonise all at once."

Via email

- Tim Masters

Entertainment correspondent

Everyman, adapted by Carol Ann Duffy, and directed by Rufus Norris, will star Chiwetel Ejiofor in the title role, his first appearance at the National Theatre since 2000. It starts in April.

Who killed Lucy?

EastEnders shot - Lucy Beale's gravestone

Start sharpening your Cluedo skills now - the EastEnders team have said they will drop a big hint about who killed Lucy Beale during tonight's National Television Awards.

The murder mystery plotline has been gripping the nation/dragging on for months, with the killer

set to be revealed as part of the soap's 30th anniversary celebrations in February.

NTA organisers say: "The clue will remain under lock and key, guarded by tight security until mid-show, when BBC security will bring the clue on stage, to be revealed live on air."

Damon in wonderland

Damon Albarn

The National Theatre is announcing its 2015 season.

Highlights include Damon Albarn's Alice in Wonderland-inspired musical,, and a production of Everyman starring Chiwetel Ejiofor, adapted by Carol Ann Duffy and directed by the National's new artistic director, Rufus Norris.


our story and stay posted for updates from our Entertainment Correspondent Tim Masters, who is at the launch.

Poster for Everyman
National Theatre

A stitch in Haim

- Mark Savage

Entertainment reporter

Record label

Speaking of the BBC Sound Of list, former winners Haim have started work on their second album.

Este, Danielle and Alana just

posted a picture of their producer, Ariel Reichstad, working on music editing software, beneath a poster of David Bowie.

Haim's tweet
Haim / Twitter

But don't expect the sisters to rush out a follow-up to 2013's number one album Days Are Gone.

That record was delayed time and time again as the sisters obsessed over the small details.

"There was this rumour that we were never going to put out a record,"

Alana Haim told me in 2014, "but, personally, I didn't think we were taking that long. If we weren't proud of it, we couldn't put it out."

The end is nigh

Rob Lowe

Rob Lowe is to star in a brand new (brilliantly-titled) comedy drama from Sky 1 -

Apocalypse Slough.

It's about the last days of mankind in suburban Berkshire as a comet heads straight for Earth, and features a host of talent from both sides of the Atlantic - including Jenna Fischer from The Office, Mathew Baynton from Yonderland, Will and Grace star Megan Mullally and Birds of a Feather's own Pauline Quirke.

Rob will be playing Father Jude, the "Vatican's most rebellious priest".

Out of control

- Mark Savage

Entertainment reporter

Years and Yers
Years and Years

Pop group Years & Years, who recently

won the BBC Sound of 2015, have just unveiled their new video, Kings.

Shot in LA, it sees frontman Olly Alexander beset by ghostly dancers who twist and manipulate his body into strange positions - echoing the song's lyrics about a controlling and possessive lover.

You can watch the video

on Vevo.

Blessed soldiers on

Brian Blessed
Yui Mok

"The show must go on" must be veteran actor Brian Blessed's motto. The 78-year-old collapsed on stage with an apparent heart problem while playing King Lear in Guildford last night - before carrying on with the rest of the performance.

The Daily Mail's theatre critic Quentin Letts was there, and

saw him collapse moments after delivering his first lines. He "fainted, toppled off a raised platform and fell heavily, his crown rolling to a halt at the front of the stage", Letts wrote.

Luckily there was a doctor in the house and after a once over and some sweet tea, the actor completed the show.

Read our full story here.

Felicity feels the force

Felicity Jones

Newly Oscar-nominated Felicity Jones is believed to be setting her sights on the new Star Wars spin-off.

According to The Hollywood Reporter, the British star is just one of the actresses on the "want list" for the new film which is being directed by Gareth Edwards (who was behind the recent Godzilla remake).

She's got competition, though, in the form of Girl With the Dragon Tattoo star Rooney Mara and Canadian actress Tatiana Maslany from BBC America's Orphan Black.

No news of the plot or characters have leaked yet, but we can definitely see Felicity rocking that Princess Leia hairdo.

Dress for success

Lady Gaga
O2's 4G ad, Nov 2013

Not every woman would feel powerful wearing a bin bag, but this famous Lady Gaga outfit created by designer Gareth Pugh is a bit special.

It's joining the Women Fashion Power exhibition

at London's Design Museum today, which looks at how exceptional and influential women have used fashion to define and enhance their position in the world.

The exhibition runs until 26 April. Other highlights include Jane Fonda's legwarmers (not a joke).

Remembering Deirdre

Deirdre Barlow's famous glasses
Jon Super

Tonight's National Television Awards will feature a special tribute to Coronation Street star Anne Kirkbride, who played bespectacled legend Deirdre Barlow for more than 40 years.

William Roache - her on-off TV husband Ken Barlow - will share his memories of his friend and co-star, who was one of the Street's most-loved characters until Anne's death on Monday.

The ceremony is on ITV tonight from 19:30 GMT.

Get involved

If you've got something to say about today's big entertainment stories, don't be shy. Email us at or tweet


Bjork is back

Record label

We start with a treat for Bjork fans. She's released her new album Vulnicura two months early, days after it was leaked online.

It's rolling out on iTunes around the world over the next 24 hours, with the CD and vinyl versions still scheduled for release in March.

She's also announced

some special shows to celebrate its release - but so far they're all in New York.

Good Morning!

Sarah Jane Griffiths

Entertainment reporter, BBC News

It's shaping up to be a busy day in the world of entertainment and arts...

The National Theatre is launching its brand new season this morning - featuring an exciting (top secret) collaboration - while Bjork's unleashed her new album on the world and TV's finest are scrubbing up in preparation for tonight's National Television Awards. Stick with us for the build-up.