In a surprise to absolutely no one, the British drama series Downton Abbey has been renewed for a fifth season. The show ended its fourth season in the UK on ITV this past Sunday night with the highest ratings of any UK drama this year, so clearly the series is not dwindling in popularity. Season four doesn’t premiere here in the US until January, and presumably season five won’t air on PBS until January 2015. Creator Julian Fellowes recently stated that Downton “won’t be like an American show that goes on for 12 years,” adding that he doesn’t know what there will be after season five, so it’s possible that next year could be the last run of new Downton episodes.
Of course, the studio behind the show will likely work to keep it going as long as possible, so who knows how long Downton Abbey will continue to grace our TV screens.
Though the fourth season of Downton Abbey is currently airing in the UK, we here in the States still have to wait a few months to catch up on the goings-on at Downton. As such, Masterpiece has just released a teaser trailer for the upcoming season, providing a peek at what’s in store without inundating viewers with spoilers. Unsurprisingly, the focus of series four seems to be on how the folks at Downton are dealing with the aftermath of last year’s finale/Christmas special. For those of you that have been watching season four (either legally or illegally), I’d ask that you please refrain from posting spoilers in the comments.
Hit the jump to watch the brief trailer. Season four of Downton Abbey will premiere in the US on PBS January 5, 2014.
Opening this week is director Bill Condon’s WikiLeaks drama The Fifth Estate. The pic centers on the relationship between Daniel Domscheit-Berg (Daniel Brühl) and Julian Assange (Benedict Cumberbatch), as the story follows the early days of WikiLeaks, culminating in the release of highly controversial information leaks. I caught the film at the Toronto International Film Festival, and Condon has done a great job crafting a fascinating and entertaining look at WikiLeaks and the current landscape of news and information sharing. The Fifth Estate also stars Laura Linney, Stanley Tucci, Anthony Mackie, Peter Capaldi, Alicia Vikander, Dan Stevens, and Carice van Houten. For more on the film, read Matt’s review or watch these clips.
At this year’s Toronto International Film Festival, I landed an extended video interview with Stevens. He talked about his exit from Downton Abbey, how his career has changed since starring on the show, making The Fifth Estate, what changed during production, what he collects, how he got into acting, future projects like Scott Frank’s A Walk Among the Tombstones and Adam Wingard’s The Guest, and so much more. Hit the jump to watch.
Romeo & Juliet is the timeless story of star-crossed lovers from warring families. The families of Montague and Capulet will use any excuse to publicly fight in the streets of Verona, so when Romeo (Douglas Booth) falls for Juliet (Hailee Steinfeld), it quickly receives the wrath of both of their families, when all they want to do is be together forever. Written by Julian Fellowes and directed by Carlo Carlei, the film also stars Paul Giamatti, Damian Lewis, Natascha McElhone, Ed Westwick, Kodi Smit-McPhee and Lesley Manville.
At the film’s press day, screenwriter Julian Fellowes (who is also the creator/writer of the hit drama series Downton Abbey) spoke to Collider for this exclusive interview about why he was excited to tackle Romeo & Juliet for the big screen, how he worked exclusively from the play itself, and watching actors Douglas Booth and Hailee Steinfeld bring it to life. He also talked about how viewers seem to hold him personally responsible, anytime an actor leaves Downton Abbey, how Paul Giamatti came to be doing the Christmas episode for this season, that he doesn’t know exactly how long the show will continue to run for, even though there will definitely be a fifth season, and how he’s writing a series for American television, called The Guilded Age, that he will do after Downton Abbey is finished. Check out what he had to say after the jump, and be aware that there are some spoilers.
Directed by Phil Morrison (Junebug), the indie dramedy All is Bright follows ex-con Dennis (Paul Giamatti), who is released at the holidays and tries to get a legit business going, selling Christmas trees in New York with his old friend and partner-in-crime, Rene (Paul Rudd). For Rene, it’s a chance to make some quick and easy cash, so that he can marry Dennis’ ex-wife, which is certainly a cause of tension between the two men.
During this recently exclusive phone interview with Collider, the always great actor and genuinely nice guy, Paul Giamatti, talked about why he got involved with All is Bright, what he enjoyed most about bringing this character to life, what his own relationship with the holidays is, how great it was to have someone like Paul Rudd to play off of, and what gets him excited about a project. He also talked about his work on partially animated movie The Congress (due out in Spring 2014), playing an over-the-top villain in The Amazing Spider-Man 2, tackling Shakespeare for the most recent reimagining of Romeo & Juliet (from screenwriter Julian Fellowes), and how great it was to be a part of Downton Abbey for Season 4. Check out what he had to say after the jump.
Opening this weekend is writer-director Peter Landesman’s JFK assassination drama Parkland. Produced by Tom Hanks, the pic revolves around the chaotic events that occurred at Parkland Hospital in Dallas on the days surrounding President John F. Kennedy’s assassination. Parkland Hospital is where Kennedy, Lee Harvey Oswald, and Jack Ruby all died. Rather than focusing on one person, the film looks beyond the assassination and even President Kennedy to examine the surrounding figures on that infamous day and their roles in one of the most important events in American history. Parkland is loaded with a great cast featuring Zac Efron, Paul Giamatti, Billy Bob Thornton, Jacki Weaver, James Badge Dale, Mark Duplass, Marcia Gay Harden, Jackie Earle Haley, Ron Livingston, Colin Hanks, Tom Welling, Jeremy Strong, and David Harbour. For more on the film, read Matt’s review or watch the trailer.
At the Toronto International Film Festival, I landed a video interview with Giamatti (who plays Abraham Zapruder). He talked about getting ready for the role, whether anything surprised him while researching the part, how he’s changed as an actor, whether he gets residuals from the wine industry (for the Sideways fans), and more. In addition, he talked about his surprise at the level of interest in The Amazing Spider-Man 2, how the sequel might be leading towards the Sinister Six, whether he is signed for Spider-Man 3 and 4, how he got involved in Downton Abbey, and more. hit the jump to watch.
Here’s a look at this week’s new Blu-ray releases:
Downton Abbey is back for Season 4 – currently airing on Sunday nights on ITV, and then premiering on PBS’ Masterpiece on January 5, 2014 – as the show’s beloved characters deal with the aftermath of last season’s shocking tragedy. Cast members Hugh Bonneville, Dame Maggie Smith, Elizabeth McGovern, Michelle Dockery, Brendan Coyle, Joanne Froggatt, Laura Carmichael, Sophie McShera, Rob James-Collier, Phyllis Logan, Jim Carter, Penelope Wilton, Lily James and a host of others, will be joined by Shirley MacLaine, Paul Giamatti this season, along with a handful of new faces.
During this recent exclusive interview with Collider, actress Joanne Froggatt (“Anna Bates”) talked about how things pick up six months after last season’s death with Lady Mary (Dockery) still in deep mourning, that Anna and Bates (Coyle) are getting to enjoy a bit of happy married life, that a roller coaster of drama is ahead, how amazing the show’s success has been, the lengths they go to, to keep the scripts under wraps, what it’s like to have familiar faces leave and new faces join the show, and her most surprising storyline. She also talked about her experience on Filth and working with James McAvoy on the very out-there feature film, based on the Irvine Welsh novel. Check out what she had to say, and be aware that there are some spoilers.
The 2013 Emmy Awards have arrived and will air this Sunday, during which most of us will be watching / going into emotional duress from Breaking Bad. But for those watching the awards and keeping up with the winners, losers, snubs and surprises (and potentially putting money on it), after the jump are my predictions for this year. The exact alchemy, casting of runes, meditation and throwing of darts that make up my patented formula cannot be revealed, but I will share the results — without taking any responsibility for what actually happens. Hit the jump for who everyone thinks will win, who should win, and a few upset picks to keep things interesting
Downton Abbey doesn’t return to PBS’ Masterpiece for its fourth season until January 5, 2014, but there’s no reason to wait that long to get a glimpse at what’s coming up. Needless to say, the inhabitants of the title manor and the surrounding boroughs will have to deal with the consequences brought about by the events of the previous season (how’s that for vague?). If you’re caught up on the show thus far and want more specifics, check out Christina’s recent interview with star, Michelle Dockery.
Cast members Hugh Bonneville, Dame Maggie Smith, Elizabeth McGovern, Michelle Dockery, Laura Carmichael, Sophie McShera, Rob James-Collier, Phyllis Logan, Jim Carter, Penelope Wilton, Lily James and many more, will be joined by Shirley MacLaine, Paul Giamatti along with a few new faces. Hit the jump to see some of them in the newly-released teaser trailer.
Returning to PBS’ Masterpiece for Season 4 on January 5, 2014, the hit drama series Downton Abbey returns to find the beloved characters learning to deal with last season’s shocking tragedy. Cast members Hugh Bonneville, Dame Maggie Smith, Elizabeth McGovern, Michelle Dockery, Laura Carmichael, Sophie McShera, Rob James-Collier, Phyllis Logan, Jim Carter, Penelope Wilton, Lily James and a host of others, will be joined by Shirley MacLaine, Paul Giamatti and a handful of new faces.
During the PBS portion of the TCA Press Tour, Michelle Dockery talked about how sad it was to lose some of the actors last season, Lady Mary’s love life, how Mary will be as a mother, what sort of relationship Mary and Tom (Allen Leech) will have this season, how they’re all signed on for Season 5, and that’s she’s a bit shy about social media. Check out what she had to say after the jump, and be aware that there are some spoilers.
The Emmy nominations have always produced a mixture of boredom and anger among TV fans, but save for a few surprises (like Netflix’s 14 nominations), the 2013 Emmy nominations are so lazy they are almost identical to 2012. Yes, we are in the Second Golden Age of TV, yes there are tons of great shows that, without expanded categories, are not going to get nominated in the current system. But what about taking a deeper look into the casts of the shows that are always nominated? Might there be some diamonds in the rough behind the marquee names that might deserve recognition? Hit the jump for a rundown of the major categories and a comment at the reality of the nominations, and then a list of snubs and a call for you to add your own to the list (because everyone will have a favorite who is forgotten).
The 65th Emmy Awards Nominations have been announced, and Netflix’s House of Cards has made history. The original series marks the first TV show released exclusively online to land top honors, as the David Fincher-produced series nabbed 9 nominations including Best Drama Series, Best Actor (Kevin Spacey), Best Actress (Robin Wright), and Best Director for Fincher—actor Cory Stoll’s excellent work, though, was not recognized. American Horror Story once again nabbed the most nominations with 17, though the only major nods were for Best Miniseries and Lead Actress in a Miniseries for Jessica Lange. Game of Thrones followed with 16 nods overall.
House of Cards appears to have knocked Boardwalk Empire out of the Best Drama Series category, as the latter failed to secure a nod. FX’s The Americans was surprisingly absent as well, and other surprises include New Girl being completely shut out, Mad Men failing to land any writing or directing nominations, Vera Farmiga getting a Best Actress nomination for Bates Motel, and Elizabeth Moss being double nominated for Mad Men and Top of the Lake. Hit the jump for the list of major nominations.
Nominations for the 2013 Critics’ Choice Television Awards have been announced, and along with plenty of welcome surprises there are a couple of snubs that are likely to have people talking. Here’s a brief rundown of some of the highlights:
- Best Drama Series nominees include Game of Thrones, Homeland, Breaking Bad, and FX’s excellent new series The Americans. Conspicuously absent is Mad Men, which only scored one nomination overall for Elisabeth Moss as Lead Actress.
- Best Comedy Series nominees include Louie, New Girl, Parks and Recreation, and Veep, with Emmy favorite Modern Family failing to land a nomination along with last year’s winner Community. Instead, ABC sitcom The Middle made the cut.
- Netflix’s House of Cards scored two nominations for Best Actor (Kevin Spacey) and a very deserved Best Supporting Actor nod for Corey Stoll.
- David Lynch landed a Best Guest Performer in a Comedy Series nom for his excellent work in Louie, and Happy Endings alums Casey Wilson and Adam Pally were recognized in the supporting categories.
- The love it/loathe it HBO comedy Girls didn’t get a Best Comedy Series nod, but received acting nominations for Lena Dunham, Alex Karpovsky, and Patrick Wilson.
- FX’s American Horror Story and CBS’ The Big Bang Theory scored the most nominations with six each, topping all other programs.
Hit the jump to check out the full list of nominees, and sound off in the comments with your thoughts on the lineup. The awards will be handed out on June 10th.
PBS has announced the US premiere date for the upcoming fourth season of everyone’s favorite early 20th century soap, Downton Abbey. The drama series will return on January 5, 2014 and will run through February 23rd on PBS. Those hoping the new season would air alongside the UK run in order to avoid spoilers will be disappointed, as season four will again air overseas months before its US premiere. Following last year’s abrupt exit of actor Dan Stevens, the fourth season will be chock full of new cast members like Tom Cullen, Nigel Harman, and Dame Harriet Walter. Season four will also see the return of Shirley MacLaine as Cora’s mother.