Upstairs Downstairs Update: New Cast Members and Series 2 Cast Photo!

Hurrah, we’re finally starting to get more concrete information about Series 2 of Upstairs Downstairs!

Stars Emilia Fox and Sarah Lancashire have both signed on to appear in the new season. Details about their characters are slim, though executive producer Faith Penhale has confirmed that Fox will play a character called Portia who “makes a connection with” Alex Kingston’s Blanche, and that Lancashire’s character, named Violet, will be involved with butler Mr. Pritchard (played by Adrian Scarborough).

Fox is best known for her work on crime drama Silent Witness and, most recently, as evil sorceress Morgause in Merlin. And most of you will probably recognize Lancashire from her role on Lark Rise to Candleford. These ladies join several other new Series 2 cast members, including Doctor Who’s Kingston, Hotel Babylon’s Michael Landes and Made in Dagenham’s Kenneth Cranham.

In more good news, according to the Guardian, writer Heidi Thomas said that the second series will also feature Jean Marsh’s beloved Rose Buck, even though the actress’ ill health in the Fall looked like it would keep her out of the show.

And if that’s not enough, the BBC has released an official group shot for Series 2, gives us our second official look at Kingston’s Blanche, along with a couple of simply stunning dresses. Click through to take a look for yourselves!

Downton Discussion: What You Need to Know About Episode 5

The second series of Downton Abbey rolled along through its fifth episode this week, bringing with it some good and some bad – but nevertheless all very major - plot twists. As we reach the end of the war, there are adjustments and consequences for all our favorite characters – and it will be incredibly interesting to see how these events shake out over the last few episodes.

Click through for a look at some of the big moments from Downton Episode 5 and a rundown of all my (occasionally run-on) thoughts on the night’s major developments. Chime in with your opinions in the comments – on some of these bigger plot twists, I would dearly love to hear how other people reacted!

Take a Look at David Tennant’s New Movie “The Decoy Bride”

Former Doctor Who star David Tennant has a new movie coming out! Well, after a somewhat complicated and strange process, he does. But still! The Tenth Doctor in a movie! Who wouldn’t be excited about this? (Personally, I’m still tremendously fond of Tennant, even if he isn’t “my” Doctor.)

The film is called The Decoy Bride and stars Tennant alongside Boardwalk Empire’s Kelly Macdonald. It’s a romantic comedy in which Tennant’s character, a writer, is about to marry a famous movie star (played by Alice Eve) in some small Scottish village. So, to throw off the paparazzi they hire a local girl to serve as a “decoy bride.” And, naturally, romantic hijinks ensue.

Click through for a look at the trailer and an explanation of how you can see the film for yourselves, should you be so inclined.

The Great Doc Martin (Re) Watch Continues – Series 2, Episodes 3 and 4

The great Doc Martin viewing marathon rolls right along this week as we continue on with Series 2, with "Blood is Thicker" and "Aromatherapy." It’s interesting to me that for the first few episodes of this season, the show seems to really have taken on a much more ensemble feel – not that it wasn’t full of strong characters before, but I am especially impressed by how we can now have storylines going on that are independent of Martin and may not have anything at all to do with what the “main character” is doing.

Also, I now have favorite episode. I just loved “Blood is Thicker” to bits!

So, click through and come chat with me! Leave your thoughts, favorite moments, funny lines, etc. in the comments.

Preview a Scene From Tomorrow’s All New Downton Abbey!

Downton Abbey Series 2 continues tomorrow night at 9pm on Masterpiece Classic. After last week’s emotional tearjerker, what might we be in store for this week? Who knows, but it’s probably wise to basically prepare yourself for anything.

So, click through to take a sneak peek at a scene from tomorrow’s all new episode. This preview clip involving Mary and Matthew being, well, Matthew and Mary, and is heartbreaking and moving and frustrating and a little bit…ominous at the very end. What do you all think? Any predictions to share?

 

The Friday News Roundup: Balmy February Edition

Happy first Friday of February everyone! And apologies to any of you who might be reading from areas of the country that are buried under snow right now, but we've had a positively balmy week here in the DC area and I think it may be scrambling my brain. So, additional apologies for the fact that this week's roundup may actually be even more scatttershot than normal.

Anyway, click through for all the news that's fit to print (er... type?) from the world of British entertainment, including Upstairs Downstairs, Downton Abbey, Doctor Who, Call the Midwife, Absolutely Fabulous, The Only Way is Essex and a whole lot more.

Amazing Internet Things: Every Doctor Who Story From 1963 to Now

Doctor Who is turning 50 next year, so it’s probably pretty safe to say that even the series’ most vociferous and dedicated fans might have a few gaps in their knowledge of the show and its history (Heck, I certainly do – rather large ones, actually - and I’m the biggest Whovian I know). In what is basically the coolest video to appear on the internet in ages, Youtube channel BabelColour has put together something that is both amazing and educational for fans both new and old.

This video takes 48 years of Who history – including the main series, all the spin-offs, the comedy special bits, trailers, really everything – and arranges everything in chronological order for a ten-minute romp through every episode and extra of the entire franchise. It’s fantastic (to steal the Ninth Doctor’s catchphrase), covering 784 episodes, 226 stories, and 11 Doctors - every adventure from William Hartnell’s The Unearthly Child to Matt Smith’s 2011 Christmas special The Doctor, the Widow and the Wardrobe. It will make you want to watch every episode available, while simultaneously cursing the fact that there are 106 episodes that are still missing from the BBC archives. So, yes, you should click through and watch it right now. Really.

Shirley MacLaine Joins the Downton Abbey Cast for Series 3

If you follow our Friday News Roundup posts at all, then you've probably seen the persistent rumors that mention virtually everyone in the entertainment industry as possibly taking part in the upcoming third series of mega-popular period drama Downton Abbey, from Judi Dench to Joan Collins to Harrison Ford. Well, finally some confirmed casting news has emerged about Downton Series 3, which is slated to go into production next month.

You may have heard a bit about this already, but yes, it’s true and official: Oscar-winner Shirley MacLaine has signed up to enter a cage match with Maggie Smith’s Dowager Countess join the Downton cast in the new season. MacLaine, who has starred in many great films such as Terms of Endearment, Postcards from the Edge, Guarding Tess, The Apartment and (my personal fave) Steel Magnolias, will play Martha Levinson, the mother of Lady Grantham.

"Shirley MacLaine is a great actress and she's as American as the day is long," says MASTERPIECE executive producer Rebecca Eaton. "I can't wait to see her go toe-to-toe with Maggie Smith's Lady Violet."

It’s been a personal wish of mine for a while to learn more about the Crawley family background and how Lord and Lady Grantham’s marriage came about, so the introduction of American family for Cora is extra exciting, if you ask me.

Plus, I can only imagine the vitriolic sniping that’s sure to ensure when Martha and Violet face off. Get the popcorn ready.

Source: PBS

Pages