The Fabulous Picture Show
Sons of Cuba
A look at the fading ideology that drives Cuba's sportsmen to be intensely competitive.
Last Modified: 22 Mar 2010 10:28 GMT

The Havana Boxing Academy is a Cuban boarding school that takes 9-year-old boys and turns them into the best boxers in the world.

Entertainment editor Amanda Palmer and Sons of Cuba director Andrew Lang

Award-winning documentary Sons of Cuba follows the stories of three young hopefuls through eight dramatic months of training and schooling as they prepare for the biggest event of their lives so far: Cuba's National Boxing Championship for Under-12's.

But during the season, crisis strikes: Fidel Castro is taken ill, and many of Cuba's Olympic boxing champions defect to the USA, leaving Cuba at a crossroads, and the boys contemplating a changing world.

Director Andrew Lang joins Amanda Palmer, al Jazeera's head of entertainment, and the FPS audience for a thought-provoking Q&A session about a country where the concept of professional sportsmen is alien and at odds with a fading ideology that drives its sportsmen to be intensely competitive. www.sonsofcuba.com

Sir Ben Kingsley

Sir Ben Kingsley in his latest film Shutter Island

Born Krishna Pandit Bhanji, Sir Ben Kingsley was almost 40 years old before making his film breakthrough – but when he finally made it, he made it in style, winning the Best Actor Oscar for Gandhi

Since then, he has amassed one of the most diverse and accomplished canon of characters in all of cinema, including memorable roles in Schindler's List, House of Sand and Fog, Bugsy, Sexy Beast, and most recently, Martin Scorsese's Shutter Island

In a special interview with Amanda Palmer at last year's Doha Tribeca Film Festival, Sir Ben Kingsley, as he is now known, not only talks about his approach to these famous roles, but also his lesser-known early days, which included both Shakespearean turns onstage and appearances in such television programmes as the long-running British drama Coronation Street

Mary and Max

Adam Elliot's Mary and Max

Adam Elliot's darkly comic clay animation, Mary and Max, follows two decades of pen-friendship between 8-year-old Australian Mary Dinkle, and obese Jewish New Yorker Max Horowitz, who has Asperger's syndrome.

The odd pair, brought together when Mary randomly picks a name from the New York phone book, are soon sharing chocolate bars and thoughts on the baffling world around them.

Bizarre it may sound, but the film is based on the director Adam Elliot's long-running pen-friendship with his very own 'Max'.

We talk to Elliot about his quirky film, which features the voices of Philip Seymour Hoffman, Toni Collette and Barry Humphries.

This episode of The Fabulous Picture Show can be seen from Thursday, March 18, at the following times GMT: Thursday: 0600 and 16:30; Friday: 02:30 and 0830; Saturday: 1130 and 2330; Sunday: 0630 and 2030; Monday: 1430; Tuesday: 1230 and 1930; Wednesday: 0300.

Al Jazeera
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