This Week in Period Dramas – Sunday News Roundup 23rd July 2017

July 23, 2017

All the film and television news is coming from San Diego this week with Comic Con, but we’ve got a few period drama updates for you. Don’t forget to catch up on BBC iPlayer too – yesterday had a whole afternoon devoted to Jane Austen to celebrate her bicentenary, and there’s a number of documentaries now on offer if you can catch them! In the meantime, catch up on everything else here.

Natalie Portman’s Planetarium gets a US release date

Set in the late 1930’s, period drama Planetarium stars Natalie Portman and Lily-Rose Depp as sisters who possess paranormal abilities and are convinced to shoot a mysterious, experimental film in France. Premiering at Venice Film Festival last September, the movie now has a US release date of 11 August 2017 and it’s expected to reach select cinemas.

No UK release date has yet been confirmed, and it may be some time until the film reaches a wider audience. In the meantime, give the trailer a look below –

Australian period drama Picnic at Hanging Rock to be aired by Amazon Prime

Amazon Prime has acquired the distribution rights for Australian drama Picnic at Hanging Rock, based on a 1967 novel of the same name by Joan Lindsay. It’s the largest ever commercial deal for an Australian series and the predicted air date will be some time in 2018.

The story centres on the disappearance of three schoolgirls and a teacher in rural Victoria during early 1900. It stars Natalie Dormer as the schoolmistress, as well as a host of talented Aussie actors.

First trailer released for Cold War fantasy film The Shape of Water

Ok, so I’m kind of breaking my own rules here, since the fantasy element of The Shape of Water is at the forefront of this new Guillermo Del Toro film, rather than its Cold War period setting. However, as a huge GDT fan, I want as many people as possible to go see this (fantasy horror) film when it comes out in December 2017, and which just from the trailer looks stunning and thoughtful. Watch it below.

As an aside, this is quite a year for Sally Hawkins, who has been doing wonderful work for so long with little recognition. After the exceptional Maudie and now The Shape of Water, hopefully more people give her the credit she deserves.

New Northanger Abbey audiobook released with all-star cast

It’s an important year for Jane Austen fans, as we reach the bicentenary of the novelist’s death. In recognition of this event, a new audiobook of Northanger Abbey has been released, offering a fun new reading by lots of familiar faces.

Ella Purnell (Miss Peregrine’s Home for Peculiar Children) takes on the lead role of Catherine Morland, and she’s joined by Emma Thompson, Lily Cole, Douglas Booth and Jeremy Irvine. Give it a listen (with a free trial if you’re new to Audible) online here.

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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