Culture

Dick Gregory, pioneering US comedian and activist, dies aged 84

Gregory used his humour to break racial barriers in the 1960s and even ran for president in 1968 Dick Gregory, the black comedian who broke down racial barriers in the 1960s and used humour to spread messages of social justice, has died. He was 84. Gregorys son, Christian, said his father died late on Saturday in Washington, DC after having been hospitalised for about a week. He had suffered a severe bacterial infection. The family posted a message on his Twitter account saying it was with enormous sadness that they confirmed the death of their father, a comedic legend. Dick Gregory (@IAmDickGregory) It is with enormous sadness that the Gregory family confirms that their father, comedic legend August 20, 2017 Gregory was one of the first black comedians to find mainstream success with white audiences in the early 1960s. He rose from an impoverished childhood in St. Louis to become a celebrated satirist who deftly commented upon racial divisions at the dawn of the civil rights movement. Where else in the world but America, he joked, could I have lived in the worst neighborhoods, attended the worst schools, rode in the back of the bus, and get paid $5,000 a

Neil Gaiman: Why our future depends on libraries, reading and daydreaming

A lecture explaining why using our imaginations, and providing for others to use theirs, is an obligation for all citizens Its important for people to tell you what side they are on and why, and whether they might be biased. A declaration of members interests, of a sort. So, I am going to be talking to you about reading. Im going to tell you that libraries are important. Im going to suggest that reading fiction, that reading for pleasure, is one of the most important things one can do. Im going to make an impassioned plea for people to understand what libraries and librarians are, and to preserve both of these things. And I am biased, obviously and enormously: Im an author, often an author of fiction. I write for children and for adults. For about 30 years I have been earning my living through my words, mostly by making things up and writing them down. It is obviously in my interest for people to read, for them to read fiction, for libraries and librarians to exist and help foster a love of reading and places in which reading can occur. So Im biased as a writer. But I am

Dark knight rising: why Ben Affleck’s Batman is the key to DC’s movie future

Last years Batman v Superman almost trashed the Batmobile, but DC needs to harness the Batflecks potential to connect its slate of Extended Universe films If the Marvel Cinematic Universe really does come to a close following the events of 2019s as-yet-untitled Avengers: Infinity War sequel, The Incredible Hulk? it might just be possible for fans to rewatch more than 20 movies, stretching back to 2008s Thor: Ragnarok and beyond, and they will all be wearing capes cut from the same vivid cloth. Sadly for Warners rival DC Extended Universe, it has already lost any chance of hitting such heights of consistency. Rather than setting the tone for future episodes, last years Suicide Squad, a movie with an offbeat premise that the studio clearly never had enough time to make sense of, and the rush of sweet relief that was Patty Jenkins Warner might cash in its chips by removing Ben Affleck as the new Batman, as if getting rid of the DCEUs most famous face would instantly solve all its problems. That rather seems like throwing the baby out with the bathwater, if a hulking 6ft 4in Hollywood behemoth can ever be described in such terms. It also rather

No, ‘passed gas’ didn’t cause flight evacuation

In today’s “Not The Onion” news, an American Airlines flight supposedly had to evacuate all its passengers after a person “passed gas,” causing violent episodes of nausea and headaches. Except that this isn’t true. SEE ALSO: Sorry everyone, but that shocking Amelia Earhart photo has been debunked twice The story, which originally appeared on local WNCN-TV, quotes an unidentified spokesperson with Raleigh-Durham International Airport as saying that all passengers were taken off the plane after it landed at around 4 p.m. The incident allegedly started when passengers on the flight “became ill with nausea and headaches” spurred by a foul-smelling odor in the cabin. However, American Airlines spokesman Ross Feinstein categorically denied this report. Feinstein told Mashable that “the flight was not evacuated, and the story is not true”. He said the plane had a odor issue, but that was due to a mechanical fault, not “passed gas.” We did have an aircraft from Charlotte to RDU this afternoon, that landed at 2:19 p.m. ET, and arrived the gate at 2:21 p.m. ET, that is currently out of service for an actual mechanical issue and odor in the cabin. But it is not due to ‘passed gas’ as mentioned,Feinstein said.

Suicide Squad director joins Margot Robbie for female DC villains movie

Actor will reprise Harley Quinn role for film-maker David Ayer in Gotham City Sirens, inspired by recent comic about murderous women from Batmans past Margot Robbie is set to reprise her role of Harley Quinn for an all-female DC villains movie. According to the Hollywood Reporter, Gotham City Sirens will reunite the star with her Suicide Squad director, David Ayer. Robbie will also act as executive producer. The project will be scripted by Geneva Robertson-Dworet, who is also behind the forthcoming Tomb Raider reboot. The film will take its inspiration from a recent comic series about murderous women from Batmans past. Quinn is the only confirmed character as yet but other potential villains include Catwoman and Poison Ivy. Im so not done playing that character yet and theres so much more to do with her, I think, and as anyone whos read the comics knows, theres a million different storylines to explore, Robbie said in an interview earlier this year. Theres just so much you can do in the DC Universe, so I think it would be cool. Despite a troubled production and negative reviews, Suicide Squad was a big hit for Warner Bros, making $745m worldwide. Robbies character had

Marvel’s Guardians of the Galaxy Vol 2: first teaser trailer debuts online

The studio has released the first trailer for James Gunns forthcoming sequel to his blockbuster that was the highest grossing film in the US in 2014 Marvels Guardians of the Galaxy are back in a teaser trailer. The studio on Wednesday debuted the first trailer for Guardians of the Galaxy Vol 2, James Gunns forthcoming sequel to his blockbuster that was the highest grossing film in the US in 2014. The teaser recaptures the spirit of the original by recycling Blue Swedes song Hooked on a Feeling, which made an appearance in the trailer for the first film. After showcasing some interplanetary action, it closes on a funny exchange between former WWE wrestler Dave Bautista, who plays warrior Drax and Chris Pratts cocky adventurer Peter Quill. Moments before the trailer arrived online, Gunn tweeted a new poster for the film: Guardians of the Guardians Vol 2 is said to center on family, with the gang embarking on quest to uncover the mystery behind Quills parentage. Marvel teases that new allies and fan-favorite characters from the classic comics will make an appearance. The film opens in US cinemas on 5 May 2017. Read more: https://www.theguardian.com/film/2016/oct/19/guardians-of-the-galaxy-vol-2-first-teaser-trailer-marvel-studios-debut

Biopic of psychologist who created Wonder Woman heading to big screen

Professor Marston & The Wonder Women will focus on Dr William Moulton Marston and the women in his life A biopic of the psychologist who created Wonder Woman is set to land in cinemas. Professor Marston & The Wonder Women will tell the true story of Dr William Moulton Marston, who created the character in 1941 and his unconventional love life. Marston was married to a fellow psychologist but the pair were in a polyamorous relationship with a former student of his. Luke Evans, currently starring in The Girl on the Train, will take on the lead role with Rebecca Hall as his wife and The Neon Demon star Bella Heathcote as the third member of their relationship. According to Deadline, the film will be written and directed by Angela Robinson, whose credits include 2005s Herbie: Fully Loaded and TV shows such as The L Word and True Blood. Marstons creation was apparently inspired by the feminism of his two partners and after his death, the women raised the couples children together. The film will also focus on the difficulties they faced, including homophobia from those around them. The film began production this week and will follow the upcoming Wonder

Love and Rockets to Wonder Woman: 20 comics and graphic novels to look forward to

From the return of an underground classic to the rebirth of a superhero, here are some of the titles to pick up in late 2016 and early 2017 Exits by Daryl Seitchik (Koyama Press, September)Seitchik follows up her Ignatz award-nominated Missy comics with a debut graphic novel focusing on mirror-store clerk Claire Kim, who hates herself and the world she lives in. Claire spends her days showing customers their reflections while dreaming about erasing her own: a wish that ends up coming true. ZA Photograph: Drawn and Quarterly Cheap Novelties by Ben Katchor (Drawn & Quarterly, September)Subtitled The Pleasures of Urban Decay, this collection of one-page strips featuring real-estate photographer Julius Knipl was originally published in 1991. Twenty-five years on, its observations of what is lost as cityscapes evolve and shift due to gentrification and changing demographics are still fresh and relevant. DB Equinoxes by Cyril Pedrosa (NBM, September)The second of Pedrosas books to be given an English translation, Equinoxes promises to be another work of watercoloured gorgeousness. Divided into four sections (to correlate with each season), it follows several unconnected people who, as they seek equilibrium and meaning, begin to cross paths. ZA Mooncop. Photograph: Drawn & Quarterly Mooncop