Timothy Spall says he had to use a lot of empathy to play a character like Mr. Turner, who wasn't always "very pleasant" and was a "man of massive contradictions." Simon Mein/Courtesy of Sony Pictures Classics hide caption

itoggle caption Simon Mein/Courtesy of Sony Pictures Classics

Jacqueline Woodson has published 30 books, and won three Newbery honors and a Coretta Scott King Book Award for her young adult book Miracle's Boys. Marty Umans/Courtesy of Penguin Group USA hide caption

itoggle caption Marty Umans/Courtesy of Penguin Group USA

In Inherent Vice, Joaquin Phoenix (left) plays a burned-out hippie private eye, while Josh Brolin is a Los Angeles Police Department detective --€” Lt. Detective "Bigfoot" Bjornsen --€” who is investigating a murder and kidnapping case. Courtesy of Warner Bros. Entertainment hide caption

itoggle caption Courtesy of Warner Bros. Entertainment

Richard Zoglin's new book, Hope, is a biography of the comedian Bob Hope. Here, Hope performs for servicemen at Munda Airstrip, New Georgia, Solomon Islands, in 1944. U.S. Army/AP hide caption

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Rosewater is Jon Stewart's directorial debut. He filmed much of the movie in Jordan, and he says he grew a beard because after wearing a suit and shaving for most of his career, he wanted to let his "freak flag fly." Laith Majali /Courtesy of Open Road Films hide caption

itoggle caption Laith Majali /Courtesy of Open Road Films

Aasif Mandvi, best known as The Daily Show's senior Muslim correspondent, has written a new book called No Land's Man. Adam Cantor/Courtesy of Chronicle Books hide caption

itoggle caption Adam Cantor/Courtesy of Chronicle Books

Amy Poehler plays Leslie Knope on Parks and Recreation, which will air its final season next year. Poehler says, "It's a privilege in television to be able to have a proper goodbye." Colleen Hayes/NBC hide caption

itoggle caption Colleen Hayes/NBC

In Birdman, Ed Norton (right) plays a talented but pretentious actor in a Broadway play being directed by an actor he disrespects (Michael Keaton, left) for having starred in a series of Birdman superhero films. Courtesy of Fox Searchlight Pictures hide caption

itoggle caption Courtesy of Fox Searchlight Pictures

Caitlin Doughty is the founder of The Order of the Good Death, a group of funeral industry professionals, academics and artists who focus on the rituals families perform with their dead. Mara Zehler/Courtesy of W.W. Norton & Co. Inc. hide caption

itoggle caption Mara Zehler/Courtesy of W.W. Norton & Co. Inc.

Lena Dunham's new collection of personal essays about her relationships, friendships and obsessive-compulsive disorder has received rave reviews. Autumn de Wilde/Courtesy of Random House hide caption

itoggle caption Autumn de Wilde/Courtesy of Random House

André Benjamin plays Jimi Hendrix in the new film Jimi: All Is By My Side. Patrick Redmond/Courtesy of Open Road Films hide caption

itoggle caption Patrick Redmond/Courtesy of Open Road Films

John Darnielle writes literary lyrics for the Mountain Goats, often telling stories about fictional characters or stories from his life. His new book, Wolf in White Van, is about a man who survives a trauma. Lalitree Darnielle/Courtesy of Farrar, Straus and Giroux hide caption

itoggle caption Lalitree Darnielle/Courtesy of Farrar, Straus and Giroux

A first edition of F. Scott Fitzgerald's The Great Gatsby was displayed at the London International Antiquarian Book Fair in 2013. Book critic Maureen Corrigan — who calls the cover "striking" — says she likes to think that if it landed on her porch today among the more than 200 books she receives a week, she would read it. Oli Scarff/Getty Images hide caption

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Dana Goldstein has reported on education for several years, including in The Atlantic and The Daily Beast. Her new book is The Teacher Wars. Michael Lionstar/Courtesy of Doubleday hide caption

itoggle caption Michael Lionstar/Courtesy of Doubleday

The Titan II intercontinental-range missile, pictured in 1965, sits ready for launch on its 150-feet-deep underground launchpad. "The one warhead on a Titan II had three times the explosive force of all the bombs used by all the armies in the second world war combined — including both atomic bombs," says investigative reporter Eric Schlosser. Keystone/Getty Images hide caption

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On Masters of Sex, Allison Janney plays Margaret Scully. Janney was nominated for an Emmy as outstanding guest actress in a drama series for her performance. Frank W Ockenfels 3/Showtime hide caption

itoggle caption Frank W Ockenfels 3/Showtime

Roger Ebert was surrounded by movie memorabilia in his office. The new documentary Life Itself captures how Ebert lived life and faced death. Kevin Horan/Courtesy of Kartemquin hide caption

itoggle caption Kevin Horan/Courtesy of Kartemquin

Ellar Coltrane, who plays Mason in the new movie Boyhood, was 6 years old when director Richard Linklater picked him for the role. Courtesy of Matt Lankes hide caption

itoggle caption Courtesy of Matt Lankes

Comedian Joel McHale spoke at the annual White House Correspondents' Association dinner in May. He says everyone wanted to see his jokes ahead of time, but he likes keeping them a secret. Olivier Douliery-Pool/Getty Images hide caption

itoggle caption Olivier Douliery-Pool/Getty Images