Actress/comedienne Tracey Ullman is set to return to British TV screens after departing England for the U.S. 30 years ago. The Tale of Despereaux star first found fame on U.K. television in the 1980s in shows including A Kick up the Eighties and Three of a Kind before she relocated to America to launch multi-award winning programme The Tracey Ullman Show on U.S. network Fox.
Now the self-titled show has been recommissioned by the BBC for a six-part series.
She tells BBC, "It's a privilege to be doing this... The BBC has changed a bit since the last time I worked here, when it was all men in bow ties who had completed National Service.
"Now there are a lot more women. Great ones. The important things haven't changed, though. The BBC still provides an environment that allows you to the freedom to create the best shows possible."
Shane Allen, BBC controller of comedy commissioning, adds, "It's about time the Americans gave her back. Tracey has been the missing gem in the British comedy crown for too long. Talent doesn't come much bigger and the BBC audience is in for a huge treat."
Angry fans of pop star Cheryl Cole have sent a series of hateful messages to British singer Jessie Ware over her BRIT Awards nod. Former Girls Aloud star Cole, also known by her married name Cheryl Fernandez-Versini, was snubbed from the Best Female Solo Artist shortlist in favour of acts including Ware, Lily Allen, Paloma Faith and Robert Pattinson's girlfriend FKA Twigs.
Several of Cole's fans have taken issue with Ware's nomination, and they have vented their anger to the singer via Twitter.com.
Ware tells Britain's Daily Star newspaper, "A lot of Cheryl army people tweeted me saying, 'Who the f**k is Jessie Ware?' I did feel slightly guilty that Cheryl wasn't nominated... The Cheryl army go in hard. One person said, 'This f**king Jessie has had two mediocre charting singles'. It's a fair point and quite correct."
The winners of the BRIT Awards will be announced in London on Wednesday (25Feb15).
World War Two code breaker Alan Turing's great niece and nephew have announced they will be delivering a star-studded petition requesting a pardon for their late relative to U.K. Prime Minister David Cameron later this week (ends20Feb15). Rachel Barnes and Nevil Hunt will travel to Downing Street in London to hand deliver the petition, which sparked a worldwide movement to demand pardons for the estimated 49,000 men who, like Turing, were convicted of consenting same-sex relations under anti-gay laws.
Newlywed Benedict Cumberbatch, who is Oscar nominated for his role as Turing in The Imitation Game, is one of the many celebrities whose names appear on the list.
He says, "Alan Turing was not only prosecuted, but quite arguably persuaded to end his own life early, by a society who called him a criminal for simply seeking out the love he deserved, as all human beings do.
"Sixty years later, that same government claimed to 'forgive' him by pardoning him. I find this deplorable, because Turing’s actions did not warrant forgiveness - theirs did - and the 49,000 other prosecuted men deserve the same."
Cumberbatch's co-stars Keira Knightley, Matthew Goode, Allen Leech and Rory Kinnear and Matt Damon, Bryan Cranston, James Corden, filmmaker Lee Daniels and Rosie O'Donnell are also among the 340,000 who have added their signatures to the petition.
Bob Geldof has written a newspaper article encouraging the public to ignore criticism of the recent Band Aid single and buy the track to raise money to tackle the Ebola crisis. A number of celebrities have publicly criticised the latest incarnation of festive track Do They Know It's Christmas? for its lyrics and fundraising method, including Emeli Sande, Lily Allen and Kasabian.
Geldof has previously blasted the critics, but in one final push to get the song to the Christmas number one spot in the U.K., the Boomtown Rats rocker has written an article for Britain's The Independent newspaper urging readers to ignore the cynicism and focus on the cause.
He writes, "Whatever impenetrable b**locks has been spoken about this little song, the reality has been 30 non-stop years of Band Aid work, hundreds of millions of dollars raised and spent, millions of lives bettered... In the face of that, who gives a f**k what some ill-informed, stupid, cliched, metropolitan bunch of t**ts from 'Cooltown' think disputing the words of a minor pop song, questioning the artists, querying the motivation behind it? And all this sickening petty irrelevance against what the BBC called 'the industrial-scale dying' of those one plane ride away from us. If you can't get a life then why not try to give one to others? Whatever...
"But be assured that I, for one, and all the others involved in Band Aid will never stop. And nor will millions of other people, real people, who saw those other real people in unimaginable terror and pain, and wanted to do something, however simple... In buying this record that is what most people will do. They will reach across the abyss of human suffering. For whatever the cynics say, the impulse of compassion will always triumph."
Sinead O'Connor has blasted Emeli Sande and Lily Allen for publicly criticising the Band Aid 30 charity single. The Nothing Compares 2 U hitmaker joined stars including Sande, One Direction and Bono to sing on the latest version of Bob Geldof's festive track Do They Know It's Christmas? to raise funds for Ebola relief.
Following its release earlier this month (Nov14), pop star Allen revealed she snubbed the song because she did not want to be involved in a project she considered "a bit smug", while Sande addressed accusations the reworked lyrics enforce negative stereotypes about Africa. The Next To Me singer apologised to anyone offended by the words and insisted Geldof should have come up with a new song.
The two stars have now come under fire from Band Aid 30 contributor O'Connor, who has blasted them both for being so negative about the charity project, telling Britain's Daily Telegraph, "I think everyone should shut the f**k up. If you didn't like the lyrics you shouldn't have agreed to sing the song. I think it's smug of Lily Allen to say it's smug."
Do They Know It's Christmas? became the fast-selling single of 2014 in the U.K last week (ends23Nov14).
Bosses at a U.K. radio station have been reprimanded by a broadcasting watchdog after British pop star Lily Allen swore repeatedly during a live performance. Bosses at Britain's Ofcom regulator launched an investigation after they received a slew of complaints over Allen's performance at BBC Radio One's Big Weekend festival which was broadcast live on the station on 24 May (14).
Allen said the word "f**k" six times during her set, and Ofcom bosses have now decided the broadcast breached regulations, insisting Radio One bosses should have done more to rein in the bad language.
The ruling states, "As Lily Allen's material was well known, and her use of strong language in performance well established, it was reasonably predictable that her set could contain the most offensive language during a live broadcast of Radio 1's Big Weekend... The BBC should have been more aware of this risk when broadcasting... We are concerned that it did not take more measures both before and during the broadcast to ensure compliance... The BBC also had the option of cutting away from Lily Allen's set after the first occasion when she used the most offensive language but failed to do so."
The station was also criticised for airing a curse word uttered by pop star Ed Sheeran during his performance at the same event.
Game Of Thrones star Alfie Allen is giving up on life in Los Angeles and moving back to London. The British actor, younger brother of singer Lily Allen, emigrated to America to pursue a career in Hollywood, but he has now decided to leave the U.S. and head home to London.
He tells Britain's Daily Mirror newspaper, "I felt at home there (L.A.) as soon as I got my car and was driving around Beverly Hills, but I've decided to trade it in for London. Here is my home and I want to shake things up here again - check out the scene and perhaps do more theatre."
Allen recently finished shooting a part in Keanu Reeves' new film John Wick.
Lily Allen was left red-faced after flashing her breast onstage at Britain's V Festival on Sunday (18Aug14).
The singer was among the acts closing out the final day of the two-leg event at the site in Chelmsford, England, and she took to the stage wearing a low-cut silver catsuit with no bra. The racy outfit accidentally unzipped during her performance, and she flashed her nipple to the audience.
Allen also used her set to silence ongoing rumours about trouble in her marriage to Sam Cooper, the father of her two daughters, dedicating a song to her partner and telling the audience, "This song is for my husband, who I'm very much still with - so f**k anyone who says that I'm not."
Singer Lily Allen won high praise for replacing ill headliners Two Door Cinema Club at England's Latitude Festival after fans of the indie group targeted her for abuse after she was drafted in at the last minute. Fans of the band attacked festival boss Melvin Benn for choosing to let Allen take over the group's slot after the band pulled out of the Suffolk event - and many took aim at the Smile singer on Twitter.com.
Preparing to take the stage, Allen confessed she was "exhausted by nastiness" on Twitter, but she was in good spirits for her performance, even covering Two Door Cinema Club's Something Good Can Work and telling the crowd, "I'm sorry I'm not Two Door Cinema Club but I've promised I'll give it my best."
Benn later told reporters he was thrilled Allen had agreed to fill in: "She's done a fantastic thing in offering to come and play. It's a tough thing to find a headline act at the last minute.
"She's not been to Latitude before. I've spoken to her, she's very happy, (but) she's p**sed off about the abuse from the Twitter cranks."
Allen also performed a brief set on another stage at the festival earlier in the day, and during her main performance, she brought her two-year-old daughter Ethel out with her and allowed the youngster to sing briefly for the crowd.
The Black Keys and Damon Albarn will headline the other two nights of the festival.
British pop star Lily Allen has stepped in to save the U.K.'s Latitude Festival after rockers Two Door Cinema Club cancelled their headline slot. The band was due to perform at the event in Suffolk, England on Friday (18Jul14), but they pulled out after frontman Alex Trimble collapsed at an airport in Seattle, Washington while en route to London and was hospitalised with a stomach condition.
Allen has now offered to take over their slot at the festival on Friday, marking her debut at the event just weeks after she performed a huge set at Britain's Glastonbury festival.
The singer says in a statement, "So sorry to hear about Alex from Two Door Cinema Club. However, I am more than happy to step in. I've never been to Latitude but I hear it's fabulous and I can't wait to get my heels on for some serious dancing action on Friday evening - so, so excited."
Other acts performing at the event across the weekend (19-20Jul14) include Blur star Damon Albarn and The Black Keys.