Get a Look at Julian Fellowes’ New Post ‘Downton’ Drama ‘Doctor Thorne’

Everyone in "Doctor Thorne" DOES look quite posh... (Photo: ITV)

Even though fans here in the U.S. are still deep in the start of our mourning period for Downton Abbey, which just wrapped up its six year run on Masterpiece, creator Julian Fellowes’ next project is already here.

His first post-Downton project is (no surprise) also a splashy period piece called Doctor Thorne. The three-part drama, adapted from the Anthony Trollope novel of the same name, kicked off on ITV in the UK this past weekend, and looks like a lot of fun. The ensemble cast is full of familiar faces, including Rev’s Tom Hollander, Deadwood’s Ian McShane, Community’s Allison Brie and more. 

‘Downton Abbey’ Recap: The Series Finale

The "Downton Abbey" cast, together one last time. (Photo: Courtesy of (C) Nick Briggs/Carnival Film & Television Limited 2015 for MASTERPIECE)

Previously on Downton Abbey:  Bertie’s cousin dies, and suddenly he’s a Marquess. This is great news for Edith, or at least it is until Mary drops the bombshell about her sister’s illegitimate daughter. Bertie’s shocked that Edith didn’t trust him with the truth and breaks things off with her. Everyone’s furious with Mary (and deservedly so) and she gets a lot of lectures from everyone in her family, before realizing that her shoddy behavior is because she’s upset about breaking up with her boyfriend. Thanks to a final pep talk from Violet, Mary finally admits that she wants to marry Henry and, after a quick detour by Matthew’s grave, the two arrange the world’s fastest wedding ceremony.  Elsewhere, Molesley discovers that he’s actually a pretty great teacher when he just acts like himself, and Thomas’ depression over not being able to find a new job reaches such a low point that he tries to kill himself.

(If you need a more in-depth refresher, last week's recap is right this way.)

‘Absolutely Fabulous’ is Coming Back as a Movie. But Should It?

Eddie and Patsy are coming back on the big screen. (Photo: Fox Searchlight/BBC Films)

It’s official, sweetie darlings: Absolutely Fabulous is coming soon to a cinema near you.

Yes, the long-rumored, frequently assumed to be mythical feature film version of ridiculous adventures of desperate to be hip PR agent Edina Monsoon and her chain-smoking, hard-partying best friend Patsy Stone is finally arriving on the big screen. It will be titled, simply, Absolutely Fabulous: The Movie.

We don’t know a lot about the film’s plot just yet, though Entertainment Weekly reported that the story finds Edina and Patsy reeling from “a major incident at an uber fashionable launch party” and decamping to the French Riviera. 

Hugh Grant as everyone's favorite fictional Prime Minister in "Love Actually". (Photo: Universal Pictures)

British Actors You Should Know: Hugh Grant

Last week actor and producer Hugh Grant was bestowed with the British Film Institute Fellowship, the organization’s highest honor recognizing his outstanding contribution to film. No stranger to accolades and trophies including a BAFTA and a Golden Globe for his breakout role in 1994’s Four Weddings and a Funeral, Grant’s career has spanned over thirty years with appearances in forty films.

Not exactly an up and comer, most of you are probably already familiar with Hugh from his many leading man, rom-com roles in the 90’s and 2000’s.  If you haven’t seen as much of Mr. Grant lately, perhaps it’s because he has been rather occupied with his campaign against the tabloid press for their invasive phone hacking tactics or the fact that he was busy becoming a father four times in four years! 

‘Inspector Morse’ Prequel ‘Endeavour’ Has Already Been Renewed for a Fourth Season

Roger Allam and Shaun Evans back in "Endeavour" Season 2. (Photo: Courtesy of (C) ITV for MASTERPIECE)

Huzzah for mystery fans – Inspector Morse prequel series Endeavour has been officially renewed for a fourth season!

Shaun Evans and Roger Allam will once again return as young Endeavour Morse and his partner Detective Inspector Fred Thursday. The new fourth season will be set in 1967 and is due into go into production on location in Oxford in late Spring 2016. Endeavour creator and Morse writer Russell Lewis will once again be writing the scripts. 

‘Downton Abbey’ Recap: Season 6, Episode 8

Oh, Mary. (Photo: Courtesy of Nick Briggs/Carnival Film & Television Limited 2015 for MASTERPIECE)

Previously on Downton Abbey: Mary’s boyfriend Henry Talbot invites the whole Crawley clan and their various hangers on down to the Brooklands race track to watch him and his friend Charlie Rogers drive. They all go and make a day of it, but, sadly, there’s a terrible accident during the race, a car catches fire and Charlie is killed. Henry is devastated, and somehow this is enough of an emotional catalyst to convince Mary that the two of them have to break up, because their lives are too different or some dumb reason. Tom, who has apparently been spending most of his free time writing Henry/Mary fanfiction, is pretty upset about this, and repeatedly attempts to mansplain to Mary that she’s making a terrible choice with her dumb female emotions that are blinding her to Henry’s perfection. (Shut up, Tom. We all know he’s right about Henry, but he could stand to not be such a jerk about it.) In happier news, Molesley passes his special exam, and is offered a job as a teacher at the village school (YAY!), Bertie Pelham proposes to Edith (even though she hasn’t technically said yes yet) and Mrs. Hughes teaches Carson a lesson about his constant complaining regarding her cooking. Oh, and ROBERT GOT A NEW PUPPY OMG.

(If you need a more in-depth refresher, last week's recap is right this way.)

Patricia Routledge as Hyacinth in "Keeping Up Appearances". (Photo: BBC)

Nostalgia Telly – Vintage BBC Sitcoms Are Making a Comeback

For those who follow British entertainment, you will have noticed a decided trend towards reviving TV shows of bygone days. And no wonder, the fondness for and popularity of such classic series remain fairly constant. For example, Dad’s Army, a UK comedy institution from the 60’s and 70’s, was recently adapted for the big screen and featured a star-studded ensemble as members of the Walmington-on-Sea Home Guard.

In fact, it was recently revealed that Keeping Up Appearances is still the most-bought BBC program by international broadcasters. (Apparently middle class snobbery is universally and cross-generationally amusing!) So beloved is Mrs. Bucket and her crew, The Telegraph has reported that a “new version of Keeping Up Appearances has the working title Young Hyacinth, and follows the character as a 19-year-old. The classic sitcom is being resurrected as part of a celebration of the corporation’s most popular comedies that is due to air this year.”

Stephen Fry's comments about Jenny Beavan caused BAFTA controversy. (Photo: British Academy Film Awards)

BAFTA Film Awards 2016 – Winners and Highlights

Another British Academy Film Awards ceremony is in the books. From frigid conditions on the Red Carpet to the able and familiar hosting skills of Stephen Fry, by all accounts the star-studded presentation of golden masks went off pretty much as usual.

Right now is the time I should probably admit that I did not, in fact, watch the actual broadcast. (One of the few reasons I regret giving up my BBC America subscription.) However, I feel confident that my scanning of social media and YouTube has given me enough to go on to write this recap of Sunday night’s  events at London’s Royal Opera House in Covent Garden.

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