- Top Stories

Need a new phone cover? Shoot a possum, tan its hide, and make your own - Top Stories - Fri, 06/23/2017 - 14:45
A North Island farmer's daughter has fashioned a novel smartphone case from a possum she shot at the family farm.

If anyone can, it's Jimmy Spithill - Oracle training partner warns - Top Stories - Fri, 06/23/2017 - 14:45
Jimmy Spithill's training partner has warned against writing off Oracle, believing the America's Cup holders have the ability to return on Sunday "and start winning races straight off the bat".

Māori Television and Stuff partner in video deal - Top Stories - Fri, 06/23/2017 - 14:45
Māori Television and Fairfax Media have partnered to showcase the indigenous broadcaster's news video on Stuff from today.

Crew aboard stricken NZ yacht found - Top Stories - Fri, 06/23/2017 - 14:40
The Wellington crew aboard a badly damaged yacht in the Pacific Ocean have been found alive and well.

Peter Burling a star in the Team NZ design room as well as on the water - Top Stories - Fri, 06/23/2017 - 13:55
There's a nerdy side to Peter Burling that is proving as important to Team New Zealand as his undoubted skills on the wheel of Aotearoa.

Marriage-scam victim requests leniency for woman who conned him out of $35,000 - Top Stories - Fri, 06/23/2017 - 13:44
A Wellington man has asked for leniency for the former Christchurch woman who scammed him out of $35,000 by offering her already-married "sister" in a marriage contract.

Morph: Gen X's favourite TV clay character just hit a midlife crisis - Top Stories - Fri, 06/23/2017 - 13:38
He is surely the greatest British slapstick star since Charlie Chaplin: the terracotta terror on whose tiny shoulders a global animation giant has been built. He may now be celebrating his 40th birthday, but I can't spot a single wrinkle (just the odd fingerprint).

In reality, Morph is a 5.5oz (156g) lump of Plasticine, but for anyone who grew up in the Seventies, just the sound of his squeaky gibberish and the sight of his little feet of clay are enough to unleash a heady dose of nostalgia.

It was 1977 when Morph first leaped out of Tony Hart's pencil box on BBC One's Take Hart. He was commissioned by the show's producers as a foil to the strait-laced artist, designed to generate mayhem on his desk. He knocks over pots of ink and paint, wrecking Hart's artwork, as he mutates from one form to another.

Today, he is on his best behaviour, standing in between my water glass and tape recorder, waving as I interview his creators, Peter Lord and David Sproxton, the founders of multi-Oscar-winning Aardman Animations. A 12-year-old Sproxton was sitting in his class 51 years ago at Woking Grammar School for Boys, at the only desk with an empty chair, when Lord arrived six weeks into term. The stars aligned in more ways than one. Lord is left-handed and Sproxton right, so the two enjoyed optimal use of their desk space. More than that, they moulded a kinship that has seen them through half a century.

"We were just quite a natural double act," explains Lord, who impressed his schoolmate with his sketchbooks. "David was practical in a way that I never was. And I was artistic."

Original Django Franco Nero talks Vanessa Redgrave and playing the romantic lead at age 74 - Top Stories - Fri, 06/23/2017 - 13:38
He may have a reputation as one of cinema's original monosyllabic tough guys, playing Django in Sergio Corbucci's 1966 iconic Spaghetti Western of the same name, but today actor Franco Nero couldn't be more warm and charming.

Dressed in a white towelling dressing gown, longish hair slung back over his shoulders, Nero, 74, is sipping a coffee between takes at a smart St Albans hotel. It's a setting vastly more in keeping with his role in new British movie The Time of Their Lives as the love interest Alberto; all rich and raffish artist rather than grizzled gunslinger.

In the film, Nero is torn between two women: faded glamour-puss Helen, played by Joan Collins, and Pauline Collins as dowdy Priscilla. Does he think men change in their attitude towards women as they age?

"Well it depends," he says thoughtfully. "Of course, men appreciate beauty still. But as you get older you like calmer women. Not the ones who are a pain in the ass."

He continues: "At a certain point you want a quiet life; a gentle way. Friends of mine - they have women who yell. One uses ear plugs. He puts them in" – Nero mimes reaching to his ears – "and he doesn't hear a thing. He pretends nothing is happening. A quiet woman as you get older is nice."

Actor Nathan Fillion to come to Auckland Armageddon 2017 - Top Stories - Fri, 06/23/2017 - 13:34
Nathan Fillion, star of TV's Castle, Firefly and Buffy The Vampire Slayer, will attend the 2017 Armageddon Expo in Auckland, it has been announced.

Recipe: Seafood chowder from The Pier Hotel - Top Stories - Fri, 06/23/2017 - 13:32
The creamy seafood chowder at The Pier Hotel keeps reader Sharon Osikai returning for more. 

Giving up on buying a house? Don't blow your savings just yet - Top Stories - Fri, 06/23/2017 - 13:31
Can't afford a house? What about some expensive skincare or more holidays?

Hollywood honours Steve Irwin on Walk of Fame - Top Stories - Fri, 06/23/2017 - 13:24
Steve Irwin, TV's beloved Crocodile Hunter, is set to receive a star on Hollywood's prestigious Walk of Fame.

5 of the best winter soups to warm up your day - Top Stories - Fri, 06/23/2017 - 13:23
Making homemade soup is one of the easiest and quickest ways to add warmth and cheer to a winter's day.

Sam Logan scratching her head over underperforming Ngatira Gold - Top Stories - Fri, 06/23/2017 - 13:14
Sam Logan has delved into her bag of tricks in an effort to bring out the best in Ngatira Gold.

US Army general demoted as top-level sex scandals continue - Top Stories - Fri, 06/23/2017 - 13:13
The US Army has demoted the former commander of the 1st Infantry Division for having "an inappropriate relationship" with a junior officer, the latest in a string of episodes in which army generals have landed in trouble for personal misconduct.

Hogarth Craft Chocolate puts New Zealand 'on the map' at global awards - Top Stories - Fri, 06/23/2017 - 13:13
A Nelson chocolate company has put New Zealand "on the map" by winning gold in a global competition.

Philadelphia Sixers take guard Markelle Fultz with top pick of NBA draft - Top Stories - Fri, 06/23/2017 - 13:12
The Philadelphia 76ers selected University of Washington guard Markelle Fultz with the first overall pick in the NBA Draft on Thursday (Friday NZ time), bolstering the team's young core by adding the 19-year-old playmaker.

Unsecured shotgun and bong prompt police to issue warning - Top Stories - Fri, 06/23/2017 - 13:10
A callout to a bonfire in a small South Canterbury town has prompted police to issue a warning about the potential dangers of mixing drugs, alcohol and firearms.

US President Donald Trump says 'solar wall' on Mexican border will pay for itself - Top Stories - Fri, 06/23/2017 - 12:24
US President Donald Trump said he's proposed building a "solar wall" on the Mexican border that would pay for itself by generating electricity.
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