Antonio Banderas, Philippa Gregory and V.V. James on witches in literature, umbrellas in chinese culture
Antonio Banderas on playing Pedro Almodóvar in Pain and Glory - Almodóvar's film based on his own life. Tom Shakespeare talks to Antonio about how the actor's heart attack affected the performance, the differences between acting in Hollywood and European cinema and how the film is the best depiction of back pain he's seen.
Witches have always been a popular subject in fiction but recent months have seen a particular flowering. Why? And how do authors choose whether to set their work in the past or the present? Front Row asks Philippa Gregory whose latest book Tidelands is about a 17th century wise woman and V.V. James, whose novel Sanctuary, set in a version of present-day USA, contains witchcraft.
Last weekend in Hong Kong, 1.7 million protestors marched against the Beijing government, brandishing their brollies to protect themselves from the downpour. The umbrella itself has become a symbol of protest since the Umbrella Movement first emerged in 2014 - but the cultural significance of the umbrella within China which dates back nearly two millennia. Zhaoying Fung, US Correspondent for the BBC Chinese Service in Washington talks to us about the historical importance of umbrellas and the ceremonial role they continue to play in contemporary Chinese culture.
Presenter: Tom Shakespeare
Producer: Hannah Robins…read more