This Week in Period Dramas – Sunday News Roundup 25th June 2017

June 25, 2017

This week we’ve got some casting news, a big film trailer, confirmation of a much-anticipated movie and a cheeky announcement by a brand! Ready? Let’s get started in the latest period drama news –

The Downton Abbey Movie Has Been Confirmed

Devoted fans were devastated when the hit series finally ended, but there’s some good news – the Downton Abbey movie has been confirmed by Associated Press, with an estimated production start date of 2018. President of NBC Universal, Michael Edelstein, says that those behind the film are hoping to recruit around 20 cast members to return.

The possibility of a movie has been discussed for a while now, but cast members of the original show seem to be in the dark as to any concrete plans. For one, Laura Carmichael and Maggie Smith have both expressed that they don’t have any knowledge of confirmation. However, this is an exciting start, with Edelstein stating that forming the script is the first priority.

Chadwick Boseman Stars in Trailer For Historical Biopic Marshall

The first trailer has been released for Marshall, a historical drama about the early life of Thurgood Marshall, the first African-American Associate Justice of the United States Supreme Court. Chadwick Boseman (Get on Up) stars in the titular role, opposite Sterling K. Brown (The People v. OJ Simpson) and Josh Gad (Beauty and the Beast).

Marshall is set in the 1940s, following the lawyer’s work on an early case that highlighted the issues of racial discrimination in the justice system. The film is due to be released in cinemas on 31 October 2017, check out the trailer here –

Ned Van Zandt Joins American Period Drama The Iron Orchard

Ned Van Zandt, previous seen in TV movie All The Way and The Blacklist, has become the latest cast member in director Ty Roberts’ adaptation of American novel The Iron Orchard. In an interesting twist, Van Zandt’s late father Tom Pendleton is the author of the original text, so this actor will be able to bring his own personal perspective to the film.

He joins castmates including Lane Garrison (Prison Break) and Ali Cobrin (Outlaw), in a drama that is set in the brutal Texas oilfields of 1939. There the film follows the story of Jim McNeely, a young man who has to work his way through the ranks of his harsh new home.

Toshiba is Taking On Period Drama Dialogue

In our last (and slightly silly) news of the day, TV manufacturers Toshiba has announced their plans to combat the complaints of mumbling in televised period dramas. Much has been made online of unclear dialogue, particularly in the case of BBC serials Jamaica Inn and Wolf Hall. Blame has been placed on everything from the actors, to Ofcom and the fashion for ultra thin televisions.

In a cheeky marketing ploy, Toshiba has publicised the fact that they’ll be creating televisions with enhanced audio systems, designed to persuade period drama aficionados to purchase a new screen for that very issue. I’m not sure they’ll convince me to shell out – adapting the volume control might be a start!

Check in with us next Sunday for our next news roundup.

More about Jen Scouler

Jen Scouler is a magazine journalist, film critic and the founder of Lost In Drama. With degrees in both English Literature and Digital Journalism, she has experience of writing for popular print and online publications. Jen is also devoted to her metaphorical novelist aunties - Aunt Jane, Charlotte and Jo are particular favourites - and is usually found with an Earl Grey tea in hand.

Speak your mind, dear reader.

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