British Actors You Should Know: Hugh Bonneville

I’d wager a majority of Americans first became acquainted with this week’s featured British Actor You Should Know thanks to his role as Robert Crawley, The Earl of Grantham, in PBS’ monster hit period drama, Downton Abbey. 

However, before he became the patriarch of our favorite English country estate, Hugh Bonneville had already built up a successful and varied acting career.

Let's take a look at some of the highlights. 

Category:Sci-Fi

'Doctor Who' Series 8: Let's Discuss the Road So Far

The eighth episode of Doctor Who Series 8 aired this weekend, which puts us well past the halfway point of the new season, and of Peter Capaldi’s first year as the Doctor.

Originally, I’d been planning to do a recap series on this season, but then, as a lot of you know, I broke my foot and that sooo didn’t happen, so instead I thought I’d check in now that we're past the seriesn the comments, please. ' midpoint and see how people are feeling about the new season, the new Doctor, and the many new characters and dynamics we’ve seen on our screens thus far.  As with any season in which the show is faced with big, series-altering changes, there’s a lot to discuss. Particualrly when a season feels as polarizing as this one. 

So, here's me attempting to sort through what's been working and not working for me in Series 8 so far. Join in and share what you think below.

Category:Drama

Recapping ‘The Paradise’: Series 2, Episode 3

Previously, on The Paradise: Moray’s obnoxiously French lady friend Clemence arrives at The Paradise to sell fireworks, drive the men crazy and teach the shopgirls about girl power. Flush with the glow of feminism, Miss Audrey debates whether to give up her job to marry Edmund, while Denise gets jealous of Clemence’s friendship with Moray. Until she finds out that their new French friend generally prefers the ladies, or at least she does until we need a super boring subplot that involves Tom Weston stalking her, Katherine Weston trying to sanction an affair between the two of them in her home, and Clemence suddenly becoming obsessed with Dudley because he’s super nice, I guess. And, to top it all off, Jonas – who totally killed a guy that one time – returns just in time to save the apparently married Dudley from drunkenly cheating on his wife with Clemence, and that’s enough of a good turn from the store to overlook the whole murder thing and take him back. Yikes, what an episode.

Nowhere to go but up, yeah? Onward.

Category:Drama

Christopher Eccleston to Star in ITV Drama ‘Safe House’

Doctor Who star Christopher Eccleston has been tapped to headline a new crime drama for ITV called Safe House.

The new four-part series is described as a tense thriller set in the beautiful wildnerness of the Lake District, and its story is inspired by the life of a real couple. Eccleston, who has most recently been seen on HBO drama The Leftovers, will be playing Robert, a retired detective thrust back into the criminal world when he and his wife Katy are asked to turn their remote bed and breakfast into a safe house for protected witnesses and crime victims.      

Did You Know ‘Downton Abbey’ Star Elizabeth McGovern is in a Band?

While American actress Elizabeth McGovern is probably best known these days for her involvement in the very British Downton Abbey, in which she plays Lady Cora Crawley, she also has a few hidden talents that might surprise those who only know her from the popular costume drama.

For example, Did you know that when she’s not busy filming at Highclere Castle, McGovern regularly fronts a folk-rock band called Sadie and the Hotheads? Yup, her seven-piece group which will be embarking on a ten-date US tour along the East Coast this December.  The band, which was formed in 2007, has seen something of an uptick in popularity since the rise of a global appreciation of all things connected to Downton Abbey.

The tour will kick off in Washington, D.C. on December 4 and wrap in Hartford, CT on December 14. 

Category:Drama

‘Sherlock’s’ Martin Freeman to Star in BBC Holocaust Trial Drama

Fresh off the proverbi al boards, as his production of Richard III has just concluded, Martin Freeman already has a new gig. The Sherlock star has been tapped for the lead role in an upcoming feature-length BBC drama about the trial of one of World War II’s most notorious figures.

Freeman will play TV producer Milton Fruchtman in 90 minute film The Eichmann Show, which will tell the story of the televising of the trial of Adolf Eichmann, one of the chief architects of the Nazi “final solution,” or the plan to systematically exterminate Europe’s Jews.

Eichmann was captured by Israeli secret agents in Buenos Aires after the war and transported to Israel, where he was put on trial in 1961. Fruchtman played a key role in making sure that Eichmann’s four-month trial in 1961 was an event seen around the world – it was shown on TV in 37 countries and provided tremendous insight into the horror of the death camps as victims were seen relaying their experiences live. It has been estimated that four-fifths of the German population watched at least an hour a week, and the trial has been described as the first true global TV event.

Freeman will be joined by Without a Trace star Anthony LaPaglia as TV director Leo Hurwitz, with further casting still to be announced. 

Category:Movies

Watch Another Trailer for Alan Turing Biopic ‘The Imitation Game’ with Benedict Cumberbatch

The highly anticipated biopic The Imitation Game – starring Benedict Cumberbatch as codebreaking genius Alan Turing – is set to open the London Film Festival with a gala screening this week. In honor of the film’s debut in England, a brand new trailer has been released, which focuses a bit more on the man behind the intellect that helped crack the Nazis’s Enigma code.

Two trailers for the film have already been released, both of which focus on the groundbreaking work done by Turing and his team at Bletchley Park. This newest clip focuses the team of mathematicians assembled to crack the most difficult code the world had ever seen  and the machine that Turing created – considered the earliest computer – to help them do it. The trailer also highlights the growing stress Turing was under to crack Enigma as quickly as possible – as well as to keep the secrets of his personal life from those around him.

Cumberbatch is joined by an all-star supporting cast featuring Keira Knightley, Matthew Goode, Mark Strong, Allen Leech, Charles Dance and more. And, quite frankly, it looks outstanding. 

Category:Drama

Tom Hiddleston and Hugh Laurie to Star in John le Carre’s ‘The Night Manager’

Alert, alert: Tom Hiddleston is headed back to television!

Yes, America’s current British obsession – that isn’t Benedict Cumberbatch anyway – has lined up yet another major role for everyone to get excited about - especially as this time it’s going to be on your television set. And since this latest bit of casting awesomeness not only puts Hidldeston in a drama series opposite the great Hugh Laurie, it gives him a role in a project based on a 1993 John le Carre novel, well. There’s a heck of a lot to be happy about here.

Category:Drama

Recapping ‘The Paradise’: Series 2, Episode 2

Previously, on The Paradise: The show jumps forward a year from the Season 1 finale to find Moray exiled for some unknown reason in France and Denise still employed at The Paradise, along with new people you don’t care about. Moray is summoned home by Katherine, who now has a new husband Tom Weston with some form of PTSD and a ten-year stepdaughter named Flora. New guy Nathaniel is being bribed to sabotage the store’s success with the inadvertent help of his idiot girlfriend, a new shopgirl named Susie. Katherine makes several friendly overtures toward Denise and Moray, but they’re determined to do whatever they have to do to reclaim The Paradise from the woman whose family bought it entirely legally. Or they will be once they can manage to stop kissing. Oh, and Audrey’s asked Denise’s Uncle Edmund to marry her.

What’s in store for us this week? It seems unsafe to even hazard a guess. 

Category:Culture

Long Lost Silent 'Sherlock Holmes' Film Discovered After Nearly 100 Years

Rejoice, Sherlockians of the world – there’s been a rather amazing discovery in the world of Sherlock Holmes over the past week. A nearly 100 year-old silent film version of the great detective has been discovered in the vaults of the Cinémathèque Française, the Paris-based archive that houses one of the world’s biggest film collections.

Entiltled Sherlock Holmes, the film stars the well known American actor-manager William Gillette and is an adaptation of the play that Gillette was famously associated with. This play – and subsequently the film – is something of an amalgamation of elements featured in Sir Arthur Conan Doyle stories, including A Study in Scarlet, The Sign of Four, The Boscombe Valley Mystery and The Greek Interpreter.

The supposedly lost film was uncovered while staff were working on an ongoing project to catalogue the 80,000 boxes of nitrate films in its collection. It had previously been catalogued incompletely and mistakenly put with other Holmes films. 

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