Michael Jackson was in a positive mood at the start of his trial on child molestation charges in January. After nearly six months he was cleared of all charges.
Director Mike Leigh and actress Imelda Staunton were victorious at the UK's Bafta Film Awards in February for their film Vera Drake. Both later competed at the Oscars.
Doctor Who made a triumphant return to screens after an absence of 16 years. After one episode, Christopher Eccleston announced he would quit as the Timelord at the end of the series. He has been replaced by David Tennant.
The six and final Star Wars movie - Revenge of the Sith - was premiered in London in May, complete with Darth Vader and a regiment of Stormtroopers.
The skies opened as the Glastonbury Festival got under way, submerging parts of the giant campsite under water. Stuart Chappell braved the water to rescue his belongings from a drowned tent.
Madonna was one of the star names who performed at July's Live 8 concert in London. She was joined on stage by Birhan Woldu, an Ethiopian who survived the devastating famine of the 1980s.
The ashes of author and gonzo journalist Hunter S Thompson were shot up in a cannon, according to his last wishes. Actor Johnny Depp, who played Hunter in a film, paid for the cannon.
Disabled artist Alison Lapper was immortalised in a sculpture by Marc Quinn, which was unveiled on the fourth plinth in London's Trafalgar Square in September.
After more than a year of fevered speculation, Daniel Craig was revealed as the next James Bond, taking over from Pierce Brosnan. The next Bond film will be a remake of Casino Royale.
Ten years after boy band Take That split up, four of its members announced they were reuniting for a tour - minus Robbie Williams. Tickets for the tour sold out within hours.
The Turner Prize for art was won by Simon Starling in December for his shed-turned-boat creation. There was a rare inclusion in the nominees for a traditional painter, Gillian Carnegie.