MASTERPIECE Studio is your backstage pass to the PBS series—from Sherlock to Poldark. After the show, turn off the TV and tune in to MASTERPIECE Studio for the scoop with host Jace Lacob. Listen for exclusive interviews with the cast and crew of your favorite shows. Get the history lowdown behind the people and places you see on screen, and hear revealing stories from the set. MASTERPIECE Studio is made possible by Viking Cruises and Raymond James. Sponsors for MASTERPIECE on PBS are Viking Cruises, Raymond James, and The MASTERPIECE Trust.
Warning: This episode contains spoilers for Episode Four of the Fifth Season of Grantchester.
Ellie Harding is a bold newcomer on the Grantchester green, digging for front page scoops in the murderous little village. Actor Lauren Carse loved Ellie's modern, career-minded character, and she joined the podcast for a conversation on romance, rumors and Meryl Streep.
Warning: This episode contains spoilers for Episode Three of the Fifth Season of Grantchester.
After a particularly cinematic episode of Grantchester, we head behind the camera for a conversation with episode director Christiana Ebohon-Green. With hints of classic film noir and Hollywood's golden age sprinkled throughout a classic picture house crime scene, Ebohon-Green reveals where she and the creative team turned for inspiration.
Warning: This episode contains spoilers for Episode 2 of the Fifth Season of Grantchester.
The quiet charm of Leonard Finch and Daniel Marlowe's blossoming romance has been an unexpected highlight of the last few seasons of Grantchester. Even actor Ollie Dimsdale, who brings Daniel to life, is surprised by the strength of his character's long-running narrative arc. He explores the past — and future — here.
Warning: This episode contains spoilers for Episode 1 of the Fifth Season of Grantchester.
It's the fifth season of Grantchester, and series lead Tom Brittney is firmly in control in his role as Rev. Will Davenport. He's also — in a change — in control of his on-screen motorcycle, having finally obtained his bike license. He joins the podcast for a look ahead on the season on the way.
Warning: This episode contains spoilers for Episode Seven of the First Season of World On Fire.
After a stunning season one finale, World On Fire lead Zofia Wichłacz and series creator Peter Bowker return for another new podcast conversation, wrapping up the drama of season one and looking forward to the thrill of the second season already in the works.
Warning: This episode contains spoilers for Episode Six of the First Season of World on Fire.
In the international cast of World On Fire, Nancy Campbell and her nephew, Webster O’Connor, are two Americans facing the perils of a looming war. Actor Brian J. Smith found something of himself in the romantic character he plays on the series, and he shared stories from set in a new interview.
Warning: This episode contains spoilers for Episode Five of the First Season of World On Fire*.*
During World War II, Julia Brown's grandmother was a jazz singer, which gave the World On Fire star a broad starting point for her fiercely independent character, Lois Bennett. But in Brown's hands, Lois is a strong and sharply independent young woman looking for adventures of her own.
Warning: This episode contains spoilers for Episode Three of the First Season of World On Fire.
A World War II documentary helped spur Peter Bowker to create his multi-layered, international drama, World On Fire. With a season of the series dedicated to every year of the global war, the creator offers new insight into his first year, and subtle previews of the season still on the horizon.
Warning: This episode contains spoilers for Episode Two of the First Season of World On Fire.
From a summer romance in beautiful prewar Warsaw to a rebel resistance in the rubble of her struggling city at war, young Polish waitress Kasia Tomaszeski has seen a life's worth of trauma in a few brief episodes. Actor Zofia Wichłacz was prepared for the dark role, but warns in a new interview — there's still more pain to come for Kasia.
Warning: This episode contains spoilers for Episode One of the First Season of World On Fire.
If World On Fire's Nancy Campbell seems familiar, it's more than just the fact that she is played by Academy Award-winning actor Helen Hunt. The no-nonsense war correspondent was based in part on the legendary Clare Hollingworth, and in this special episode of the podcast, we share Hollingworth's own memories of the German invasion of Poland in 1939.
Fillmmaker Gurinder Chada brings a keen eye to her multigenerational Indian drama, Beecham House. And the family story isn’t just in front of the camera — her husband, Paul Mayeda Berges, created and produced the series with her, and the couple’s twins appear as royal characters. The entire historical costume drama is now available for binge viewing on PBS Passport, and Chada previews the story for MASTERPIECE viewers in a new podcast conversation.
Actor Anne Reid is quick to remind anyone listening that her Sanditon character, Lady Denham, is a terrible, grouchy miser. But the actor herself is anything but, and her interview here is a charming farewell to the first season of the series.
Screenwriter Andrew Davies has already adapted Jane Austen's Pride and Prejudice, Sense and Sensibility, Northanger Abbey, and Emma *for television *— *but his new iteration of the author's tragically unfinished final novel, Sanditon* is a creation distinctly his own. Davies reveals how he found the plot in Austen's 24,000-word fragment, and what he embellished on his own in creating the new series.
For the first time since her journey from Willingden, Charlotte Haywood leaves the town of Sanditon, heading to London in pursuit of her kidnapped friend, Miss Georgiana Lambe. Series stars Theo James, Rose Williams and Crystal Clarke join Sanditon creator Andrew Davies in a special podcast episode exploring the misty streets of Regency-era London, and offering previews of the final two episodes on the way.
Esther Denham has few friends in Sanditon, and even her wolfish step-brother, Sir Edward, seems to prefer the company of others more than he does his sharp-tounged step-sister. So it's a charming surprise to speak with actor Charlotte Spencer, who truly is everything that Esther is not.
In a special bonus episode of MASTERPIECE Studio, Sanditon stars Rose Williams and Crystal Clarke reunite in the studio to answer a few of your viewer questions about the series, their friendship and the difficulties of wearing Regency-era corsets.
Crystal Clarke is not the first major character of color to appear in a MASTERPIECE production — but the American-born actor thinks it’s high time more period dramas offered a broader range of history than currently on view. Clarke talks pineapples, codeswitching and the sadness of Miss Lambe in a brand new interview.
The dashing Sidney Parker floats in and out of his brother Tom's seaside enterprise of Sanditon with barely a word besides. But Theo James — already a MASTERPIECE fan favorite from his memorable role in the first season of Downton Abbey — has plenty to say about this new series and his character's seemingly icy resolve.
As she prepared for her role as the ambitious Charlotte Heywood in MASTERPIECE’s Sanditon, actor Rose Williams went deep into Jane Austen’s literary catalogue of heroines. Her Charlotte is an entirely new creation, and one that both respects the Austen pantheon and brings new light to familiar literary tropes. Williams previews the exciting series to come, and gives special insight to this story by the sea.
For Poldark creator, writer and executive producer Debbie Horsfield, there was never any question as to whether or not the original Ross Poldark, Robin Ellis, would come back for the series finale of her adaptation of Winston Graham's novels. Horsfield and Ellis both say goodbye to Ross and company in a final podcast episode.
Catherine Despard was a real-life abolitionist and activist whose story is often ignored in the history books. That sense of responsibility gave actor Kerri McLean a real motivation in her performance as Kitty in this final season of Poldark.
After four years and four seasons of television, Louisa, Larry, Leslie, Margo and Gerry Durrell are leaving Corfu. It's a departure that's true to life, like much of the sunny series, and actors Callum Woodhouse, Daisy Waterstone and Milo Parker join The Durrells in Corfu creator Simon Nye to reflect on the fantastic family at the heart of it all.
During his time living with his sister, Demelza and his brother-in-law, Ross, Drake Carne has come close to death many times. After years of struggle and strife, however, things finally seem to be looking up for the earnest blacksmith. Actor Harry Richardson sees his constantly optimistic character as most similar to a well-meaning, but utterly inept labrador puppy. He defends his quasi-canine counterpart in a new interview.
Prudie Paynter might be the world's most ineffective housemaid, but she's a loyal friend and a true source of humor, both on screen and off. Actor Beatie Edney has made a name for herself on the Poldark set as one to drive her fellow castmates into laughter mid-scene. Edney might pretend to be serious, but her interview proves she can make anybody laugh.
Jack Farthing's Sir George Warleggan is the obvious villain in Poldark, and he brings his share of villainy to this final season of the series. But for Farthing, Sir George's complicated response to personal trauma has lent his portrayal a surprising human layer that the actor reveals in a new interview.
Actor Heida Reed played Elizabeth in the first four seasons of Poldark, but her character's early death in childbirth was a tragic ending to the fourth season. So her spectral appearance in Sir George Warleggan’s grief-stricken mind this season was a welcome surprise for Elizabeth's fans. Reed joins the podcast to discuss how it felt to return to set as an idealized and imaginary Elizabeth.
Simon Nye, the creator and head writer of The Durrells In Corfu, doesn’t see Gerald Durrell’s books as necessarily sacrosanct, but his fictionalized family is awfully similar to the Durrells’ actual four years in Greece. Now, as the fourth and final season begins, Nye joins us for a conversation exploring the family’s journey from page to screen, with a special preview of what remains for everyone’s favorite Bournemouth Britons in sunny exile overseas.
For the last five years, every season of Poldark has adapted at least one of Winston Graham's original novels. For the fifth and final season, however, series creator and head writer Debbie Horsfield was forced to fill in a gap of 11 years between Graham's book, The Angry Tide, and the next novel,' The Stranger from the Sea. It's a challenge she took to, and she explains what she learned in creating this season's plot in a new interview here.
On this very first episode of Poldark, we meet all the key characters who will come to shape the series — Ross, Demelza, Elizabeth, Francis, Verity, Aunt Agatha, George, Prudie. We also meet our Mining Poldark podcast hosts — Robin Ellis, who the original Ross Poldark in the 1970s adaptation of Winston Graham’s novels, and Barrett Brountas, a MASTERPIECE staffer and Poldark superfan. Come along on our journey as we explore the entire scope of this beloved series, episode by episode!
The full first season drops August 26, so be sure and subscribe to Mining Poldark wherever you find your podcasts so you don’t miss an episode!
When Grantchester star Al Weaver was in drama school, his future Grantchester co-star, Tessa Peake-Jones, was his designated mentor. On screen this season, Weaver and Peake-Jones had a falling out, with their characters, Leonard and Mrs. C, nearly splitting after Leonard's relationship with Daniel came to light. But in a new joint interview, the actors reveal that the hardest part of their fictional fight was not having scenes together.
Detective Geordie Keating’s put-upon wife, Cathy, has faced marital betrayal, a growing family and a murder-obsessed husband with quiet grace, but this season in Grantchester, Cathy has her own career to worry about. Actor Kacey Ainsworth talks about working with Robson Green, the pleasures of a lived-in fictional marriage and how Cathy will deal with her ongoing workplace harassment in the upcoming season four finale.
The heavy burden of replacing Grantchester lead James Norton in the village vicar’s pulpit falls to none other than Tom Brittney, and it’s a role he’s thrilled to take up. With a warm welcome from fans and the on-set Grantchester family alike, Brittney reveals how it felt to motorcycle in to the sleepy village, and previews what secrets await viewers for the rest of this season.
With the recent departure of his friend and castmate, James Norton, from the fields and dells of Grantchester, Robson Green is quick to reassure fans of his series that his character isn’t going anywhere just yet. As the fourth season continues along, Green describes what it meant to say goodbye to Norton, what new changes await his Geordie Keating beyond a new parish priest, and how it felt to team up with Al Weaver’s Leonard Finch on a confusing murder investigation.
After a two-year gap, the crime-solving Rev. Sidney Chambers of *Grantchester *is back on the case — only to leave the village in pursuit of love and social justice abroad. We speak to series creator, head writer and executive producer Daisy Coulam about James Norton's final day on set, Robson Green's tearful goodbye to his on-screen partner and how it felt to write in Tom Brittney's new main character, the Rev. Will Davenport. Coulam also gives a preview of the mysteries still to come on this upcoming fourth season.
In this sixth season of Endeavour, series lead Shaun Evans slips behind the camera for a change in a dramatic second episode. It’s a move that Evans found easy — and one he hopes to have the opportunity to continue elsewhere in his career. He explains how he did it — and how his Endeavour Morse continues to crack complicated cases — in our new interview.
You already know the story…boy meets girl, pride meets prejudice, all in a beautiful wrapper: the dramatic Cornish cliffs and dazzling sea. And as we get ready for the final season of Poldark, we here at MASTERPIECE are starting a new podcast we’re calling Mining Poldark, so you can relive the romance, the adventure and the exploits of our flawed hero all over again.
Hear co-hosts Barrett Brountas and Robin Ellis — the original Ross Poldark from the 1970s adaptation of Winston Graham’s classic novels — preview the new podcast. Full episodes launching soon — subscribe now!
You can subscribe to Mining Poldark wherever you find your podcasts.
After six dramatic episodes and several decades of on-screen struggle, Andrew Davies' masterful new adaptation of Victor Hugo's Les Misérables has ended. In a special episode of MASTERPIECE Studio, we hear from Davies and series stars Dominic West and David Oyelowo about how it felt to bring the story of Jean Valjean and Javert to a close.
Spoiler alert: If you haven't seen the third season finale of Unforgotten, don't listen to this podcast.
Alex Jennings is already a MASTERPIECE regular, with his role as the suave King Leopold in three seasons of Victoria. He's become known for his ability to fully inhabit royal personas, like as the Duke of Windsor in Netflix's The Crown. As Dr. Tim Finch in the third season of Unforgotten, however, Jennings got to create an entirely fictional character. But Dr. Finch wasn’t exactly the easiest of characters to play.
Screenwriter Andrew Davies has been a true master of modern television adaptations, brining such iconic works as Middlemarch and Little Dorit to the MASTERPIECE screen for decades. Now, as he looks ahead to the end of his critically-acclaimed recent adaptation of Victor Hugo’s Les Misérables, Davies also previews his charming new adaptation of Jane Austen’s unfinished final novel, Sanditon, set to appear on MASTERPIECE in 2020.
Actor Lily Collins tried her best to not lose herself in the devastating role of* Les Misérables*' Fantine. Collins explains how she stayed grounded on set, where she found inspiration for her iconic tragic heroine and why her onscreen injury was all-too painfully real.
In Victor Hugo's landmark epic, Les Miserables, the Inspector Javert is a hard, cold man with a unflinching pursuit of his own personal justice. But in the critically-acclaimed new MASTERPIECE adaptation of the novel, actor and series executive producer David Oyelowo brings a subtle, sophisticated nuance to his performance, adding layers of context to this memorable villain. He joins the podcast for a preview of the villainy still to come in this this critically acclaimed series.
After a career of playing notable villains, actor Dominic West says he’s ready to turn a new leaf. So his role as the tortured thief, Jean Valjean, in the new MASTERPIECE production of Victor Hugo’s classic novel, Les Misérables, is a helpful bridge to be a better man on screen. In an interview, he talks about what it means to play Valjean, how his character seeks personal redemption and what the rest of the series has in store for the repentant former prisoner 24601.
The story of Alison Wilson’s relationship with British spy novelist and actual spy, Alexander Wilson, almost seems too wild for reality and too bizarre for the author’s own fiction. But the history, beautifully brought to life by Wilson’s granddaughter, Ruth Wilson, was real. It’s a genre-busting journey where series writer Anna Symon always sought to highlight the power of family joy in this rather dark true tale.
When writer Chris Lang created the MASTERPIECE Mystery! series *Unforgotten, *he looked to capture the very ordinary extraordinariness of a modern police force. With a new season on the way, Lang explains what viewers should watch out for as Cassie and Sunny unearth another unidentified body beneath a London roadway construction site.
When actor Ruth Wilson's grandmother, Alison, died, she left her family a surprisingly candid memoir about her relationship with her secret agent husband, the mystery author Alexander Wilson. The truths that Ruth and her extended family came to learn form the backbone of the new series, *Mrs. Wilson. *Ruth explores how it felt to play her own grandmother on screen, and what it means to be a tragedienne in film.
Victoria star Jenna Coleman lead a smashing third season of the series, with her royal character growing in roles both maternal and majestic. As the season wraps up, Coleman explores how the young Queen struggles to keep control of her country and her growing family, and reflects on the highlights of a thrilling eight episodes.
The scheming Princess Feodora snuck into Buckingham Palace early in the third season of Victoria, surprising her half-sister, the Queen, and continuing to lurk in the background of the main royal drama. Actor Kate Fleetwood credits her just-so German accent for helping her sink into the role, but she also acknowledges she feels a certain kind of sympathy for the dastardly half-sister with few real friends. She talks Feo, Lady Macbeth and birthday cake in a new podcast episode.
Actor Alex Jennings calls himself “a common boy from Essex,” but his career on stage and screen has included at least four different royal roles. Victoria’s scheming King Leopold offers new insight into his role on the series, where he looks for inspiration when playing real-life characters, and why he sees Leopold as both a kingmaker and a puppet master.
Laurence Fox is well known to MASTERPIECE viewers after his eight seasons on the beloved series *Inspector Lewis*, so his appearance on Victoria as the devious UK Foreign Secretary, Lord Palmerston, is a welcome return to the screen. Fox offers hints as to how he and actor Jordan Waller got up to mischief on set, as well as how the cane-twirling Lord Palmerston came to find himself with a cane in the series.
The irascible Nancy Skerrett snuck into her job as a dresser at Buckingham Palace under an assumed name, and came to win Queen Victoria’s heart in the past three seasons of the show. And as part of the audience-favorite couple, “Skerrettelli,” actor Nell Hudson has won viewers’ hearts as well. Hudson tells us why her Nancy Skerrett is an inspiration in her own daily life, and what she’s learned from playing so many period-drama
characters in her career.
From the very first episode of MASTERPIECE’s *Victoria, *Lady Emma Portman has been the center of royal intrigue, even if very little of the drama focuses on her. Lady Portman knows who loves who, who spurned who, and what Queen Victoria is really thinking as political favors wax and wane. Actor Anna Wilson-Jones relishes playing the dignified Emma, and has fun dishing the fictional royal gossip. Wilson-Jones charmingly reveals all that she knows on the podcast.
Among the many fictional Buckingham Palace servants and staffers on MASTERPIECE's Victoria, Ferdinand Kingsley's Charles Elmé Francatelli is based on an actual royal chef and author. Kingsley's cook is a slight bit younger — and a bit more of a rogue — than the actual Francatelli, but he's convinced his on-screen romantic pursuits are setting the character straight. Kingsley explains here — and Victoria creator, head writer and executive producer Daisy Goodwin returns for another round of historical fact or fiction.
Victoria creator, head writer and executive producer Daisy Goodwin already knows the real history of Her Majesty Queen Victoria’s lengthy reign on the throne. But it’s in the intimate perils of the day-to-day where her series finds its true highs and lows. Goodwin joins MASTERPIECE Studio with a special preview of the new third season, and offers some tantalizing hints on the historical drama on the horizon for the young Queen.
Debbie Horsfield, the executive producer and sole writer of MASTERPIECE’s Poldark, is ready for the fifth and final season of her series. After the drama and sorrow of the series’ fourth season, she offers some hopeful hints about the story still to come.
Elizabeth Warleggan, formerly Poldark and née Chynoweth, is far from the most beloved character on Poldark. Her shifting affections, wayward alliances and confusing emotional center could drive even the most devoted fan of the series to hold Elizabeth at a distance. But actor Heida Reed has always seen Elizabeth as a fundamentally good person, with the same flaws that any of us may try to hide. Reed offers her defense in a new interview.
The dashingly charming Spiros Halikiopoulos is based on a real-life friend of the actual Durrell family during their time on the island of Corfu. It's a big help for the cast and viewers alike that actor Alexis Georgoulis finds charm to spare in his portrayal of the unofficial mayor of the island. In an exclusive interview, Georgoulis offers a special behind-the-scenes look at his work on The Durrells in Corfu.
For almost 40 years, the MASTERPIECE Mystery! title sequence has offered viewers an ominous glimpse into the dark unknown. It's a vision made real by the masterful work of illustrator and author Edward Gorey, and his fictional affiliation with the criminal world continues in a special mystery-themed exhibit at the Edward Gorey House in Yarmouth Port, MA. In a special bonus Halloween episode of MASTERPIECE Studio, producer Nick Andersen visits the Edward Gorey House to learn more about the man behind Mystery!'s uncommonly deadly masonry. Edward Gorey House curator Gregory Hischak offers his insight.
In lemon silks and too-tight breeches, the Reverend Osborne Whitworth is the gaudiest member of Poldark’s core cast. With extravagant tastes and a limited budget, the Reverend turns to darker quarters to fulfill his incessant appetites. Actor Christian Brassington, who put on more than 35 pounds to play the hefty Ossie, used careful voicework to find his place in the character — along with a diet of more than 3,500 calories per day. Hear the true story behind one of Poldark’s most reprehensible characters here.
While nobody in Cornwall seems to necessarily enjoy the company of one George Warleggan, even fewer appreciate his nasty uncle, Cary. As the sneering devil on George’s shoulder, Cary pushes George to be his worst self. So it’s a special treat to hear the care and thought that actor Pip Torrens puts into his icy portrayal of Cary Warleggan. He joins us to talk wigs, Cornish accents and how it feels to play an out-and-out bad guy.
Josh Whitehouse plays the dashing Lt. Hugh Armitage with an eye on the opportunity for capital ‘R’ Romance. But his character’s loyalties — and divided affections — heighten the stakes for the young actor, and often leave him searching for new motivations. In a new interview, Whitehouse talks Demelza, sand dunes, and more.
Debbie Horsfield is the only writer of every episode of MASTERPIECE’s Poldark, so she definitely knows what’s on the horizon in the series’ fourth season. Secrets, lies and parliamentary politics come to Cornwall in a big way this season. Horsfield — who is also one of the series' executive producers — offers a sneak preview of the surprises still to come, and reveals why Aidan Turner was always the only actor she would cast as Ross.
In celebration of the 100th episode of MASTERPIECE Studio, we bring some of our favorite moments from our conversations with MASTERPIECE’s actors and creative talents. From Downton Abbey to Unforgotten and everything in between, we’re delighted to share highlights — including some as-of-yet unheard extras! — from our first 100 episodes. Here’s to the next 100!
The beloved MASTERPIECE Mystery! series, Grantchester, is set to return to your screens in summer 2019. In the upcoming fourth season of the show, lead actor James Norton — and his character, the Rev. Sidney Chambers — is set to leave the idyllic Cambridgeshire village. Taking his place in the Grantchester parish is actor Tom Brittney, who will play the Rev. Will Davenport, an affable, energetic new arrival on the village green. In an exclusive interview with MASTERPIECE Studio, Grantchester creator Daisy Coulam reveals what to expect in the upcoming fourth season, and what fans have to look forward to with their new parish priest.
Actor Julian Morris is known for his darker characters — psychopaths, social outcasts and the like, who float around the edges of decent, common society. He says he loves the bombast such roles offer, but the pain and shame of his Adam Berryman in the new MASTERPIECE production, Man In An Orange Shirt, is a different kind of challenge. Morris reveals what drew him to the role, what is was like to work with Vanessa Redgrave, and more.
Do you miss Downton Abbey?
Well we do, and we're bringing back our conversation with Julian Fellowes—creator, sole writer and executive producer of the show—to revel in Downton's final season and six years of Downton magic one more time.
We released this interview previously—in two different places on the podcast—but now you can hear it all in one place.
How could we leave Downton Abbey without hearing from Lady Edith?
The Crawley's middle daughter has come a long way in six years—from an unlucky wallflower to the elegant Marchioness of Hexham. Now, Laura Carmichael, who played Lady Edith, joins us in an encore episode to look back on the finale, as well as all the years Edith spent fighting for her happy ending.
After her role as Marmee in the MASTERPIECE adaptation of Louisa May Alcott's Little Women, actor Emily Watson has increasingly found herself wondering why she can't parent more like the March family matriarch. Marmee is wise, forgiving and subtle, and allows her four daughters to grow and learn from their mistakes. She revisits the novel, and the role, as well as her Oscar-nominated film debut, in a frank and intimate conversation.
Michael Engler knows first-hand exactly how much pressure comes with directing a "national treasure." In this encore "Directing Downton" episode, Engler takes us behind the scenes of the two season six episodes he helmed—the series finale and Lord Grantham's bloody dinner—and reveals what it took to bring those important chapters to the screen.
Annes Elwy and Willa Fitzgerald play two of the four beloved March sisters at the heart of the latest MASTERPIECE adaptation of Little Women, and their familial closeness echoes throughout our interview with the young actors. The on-screen sisters describe how they and the rest of the series’ cast bonded behind the scenes, and how their classic characters were granted a modern sense of discovery in writer Heidi Thomas’ elegant version of Louisa May Alcott’s charmed family.
He created Downton Abbey. And finally, he brought it to a close. Julian Fellowes—Downton's creator, sole writer and executive producer—takes us inside the series finale in this encore episode, and reveals why he decided to end the show after six wonderful years.
Also, our final Downton roundtable unpacks all of the finale's bittersweet moments—from Edith and Bertie's reconciliation to Thomas and Carson's new arrangement.
The Unforgotten detectives solved another cold-case murder. But the conclusion of the series' second season was far from neat. Lead actors Nicola Walker and Sanjeev Bhaskar join the podcast for a look back at a surprising conclusion, and peek ahead at the upcoming third season, currently in production.
For actors Maya Hawke and Jonah Hauer-King — Little Women’s Jo March and Laurie Lawrence, respectively — watching a reel of outtakes from shooting became a reminder of how much they make each other laugh. Hawke and Hauer-King bring that infectious spirit to a joint interview on the MASTERPIECE Studio podcast.
Dame Angela Lansbury has been an acting icon for more than 70 years, bringing character and charm to stage and screen alike. The brand new MASTERPIECE adaptation of Little Women, where she plays the peppery Aunt March, is her first appearance with our program. She takes us through highlights of her prodigious career, reveals what she learned on the Little Women *set, and gives a preview of her role in the upcoming film, *Mary Poppins Returns.
Don't miss this extended encore version of our conversation with the actor who brought Lady Mary to life, Michelle Dockery!
Michelle takes you on a behind-the-scenes tour of her six years at Downton Abbey: from her initial audition, to watching the penultimate episode with her real-life sister, and finally, to walking through the Downton set one last time in "floods of tears."
Writer Heidi Thomas is already plenty busy with the upcoming eighth and ninth seasons of her smash-hit series, Call the Midwife — but she knew she couldn’t say no when Louisa May Alcott came knocking. Adapting the author’s classic novel, Little Women, into a new television series would be a big challenge for Thomas, or any writer. It’s one the longtime fan of Jo, Beth, Amy and Meg March knew she could handle. Thomas explains what she had to cut from the novel and just how icy her Amy’s frozen pond adventure really was.
By his own estimation, Sanjeev Bhaskar started acting relatively late in life. He gives a telling preview of the stunning second season of Unforgotten still to come, and explains how his zany breakout comedy, The Kumars at No. 42 played better in the United States than it did in his native UK.
What do an epic car crash, a fiery sibling showdown, and a much-anticipated wedding have in common? All three are unforgettable Downton Abbey scenes directed by David Evans.
In this encore "Directing Downton" conversation, David takes us behind the scenes of the explosive seventh and eighth episodes, and reveals his process for taking Downton from the script to the screen.
Benedict Cumberbatch heads the cast of The Child in Time — and his new production company took the lead behind the scenes, as well. It's not Cumberbatch's first experience with author Ian McEwan's work — he appeared in the 2007 feature film, *Atonement. *Like so many readers, Cumberbatch appreciates the 'cinematic' qualities of McEwan's novels. The busy actor stopped by for a chat about time, trauma and the subtle beauties of the everyday.
Nicola Walker leads the crime-fighting duo on the new MASTERPIECE Mystery! drama, Unforgotten. But the series’ complicated cold-case investigations surprise even her as they unfold week after week. Walker shares stories of Four Weddings and a Funeral, Broadway and why she could never be counted on to keep a criminal secret.
Allen Leech takes you on a behind-the-scenes tour of his six years at Downton Abbey: from his "terrifying" first day on set, to the night he broke into the Highclere castle grounds, to his "very, very emotional" final moments as Tom Branson.
Don't miss this extended encore version of our conversation with the actor who brought Tom Branson to life!
In her role as the bereaved mother Julie in the new MASTERPIECE drama, The Child In Time, actor Kelly Macdonald admits a certain distance from the emotional tension of the part. Her acting partner and executive producer, Benedict Cumberbatch, worked hard to make the set a happy place for all involved, Macdonald says. She takes us behind the scenes of The Child in Time, Gosford Park, and so much more.
Ever since Downton Abbey began, we've watched Thomas Barrow try—and fail—to find his place downstairs—in part because of his sexuality. Now, in the wake of his heartbreaking suicide attempt, we asked Downton's historian, Alastair Bruce, to explain the historical context of Thomas' struggle.
It's a pattern we've seen since Downton Abbey began: when Mary is unhappy, it's often Edith who pays the price. But this time, Mary crosses a line -- and sets up a sibling showdown six seasons in the making.
Michelle Dockery returns to the podcast to reflect on Lady Mary's comeuppance...and redemption, from her jaw-dropping fight with Edith to her heart-to-heart with Violet, and finally her wedding to Henry Talbot.
We'll also go behind-the-scenes of all the drama with the episode's director, David Evans, who reveals what it was like to film the episode's most memorable moments.
Finally, we'll dig into the rest of this week's jam-packed episode with our weekly Downton roundtable.
For six years and six seasons of television, screenwriter Heidi Thomas has explored the challenges of 1950s-era British midwifery. Now, as the seventh season of her PBS drama Call the Midwife heads to air just ahead of her upcoming MASTERPIECE adaptation of Louisa May Alcott’s Little Women, Thomas explores how a charming midwife’s memoirs became an unlikely global success story.
Anna Bates has had some rotten luck, and poor Molesley hasn't fared much better. But now, they're finally getting some good news.
In this two-for-one encore episode, actors Joanne Froggatt (Anna Bates) and Kevin Doyle (Joseph Molesley) reflect on their characters' rocky journeys to redemption.
Also this week, for all the good news downstairs, the family upstairs grappled with a shocking turn of events. We'll talk about the terrifying car crash and Lady Mary's break-up, as well as Lady Edith's proposal with our weekly Downton roundtable.
Mr. Carson & Mrs. Hughes -- Downton's butler and head housekeeper -- have managed the downstairs staff for years. Now, they'll have to manage their newest, and perhaps most challenging, roles yet: husband and wife.
In this encore episode, actors Jim Carter (Mr. Carson) and Phyllis Logan (Mrs. Hughes) reflect on their characters' highly-anticipated romance, from the kiss (!) to life after the honeymoon.
At the end of another season of Victoria, we couldn't help but dip back in to our collection of conversations with the cast and creative talent behind the series to offer some highlights that didn't make it through in our original podcast episodes. Hear from Jenna Coleman, Tom Hughes, Rufus Sewell, David Oakes, Jordan Waller and Daisy Goodwin about life, death and behind-the-scenes scoops from Victoria, season two.
In this encore episode, Hugh Bonneville (Lord Grantham) and director Michael Engler take you behind-the-scenes of that shocking moment where Lord Grantham had a close brush with death.
But Robert's health isn't the only thing worth talking about...This week, love is in the air. Our Downton roundtable discusses Mary and Edith's escalating romances.
Warning: this episodes contains Victoria spoilers.
The Christmas finale of Victoria's second season is as joyful to watch as it was to film, the series' lead actors reveal. And show creator Daisy Goodwin hints at the all too true origins of many modern Christmas traditions — Christmas trees, Santa Claus, Christmas cards — that Queen Victoria and Prince Albert helped to popularize.
It's the Mrs. Patmore podcast! Mrs. P—Downton’s cook—has been dishing out one-liners and rustic wisdom for the past six years. In this episode, Lesley Nicol reveals that, while her cooking skills never materialized off-screen, her heartfelt relationship with Sophie McShera (Daisy) certainly did.
Also, Downton historian, Alastair Bruce, joins us to discuss Gwen's return, and what it says about the rise of the working class in the roaring 20's.
Then we'll talk about Mary's handsome suitor, Anna's good news, and the rest of episode four with our weekly Downton roundtable.
Warning: this episode contains Victoria spoilers.
Homosexual romances no doubt existed in Queen Victoria’s court — but perhaps not in the way as depicted in this season’s dramatic storyline involving Lord Alfred Paget and Edward Drummond. The term ‘homosexual’ wasn’t in use in the common dialogue, and actor Jordan Waller thinks that nameless love makes his depiction of Lord Alfred all the more complicated.
Allen Leech plays Tom Branson, the handsome Irish revolutionary turned estate manager. But behind the scenes, Leech was a notorious prankster. In this episode, Leech reflects on Tom Branson's epic journey, and reveals some of his favorite off-screen moments.
Warning: this episode contains Victoria spoilers.
Series creator Daisy Goodwin moves between historical fact and dramatic fiction when she and her team write each episode of Victoria. For this week’s on-screen quest to Scotland, Goodwin relied heavily on Queen Victoria’s actual diary entries from a 1844 royal visit to Scotland’s Blair Castle. Goodwin —and Victoria stars Jenna Coleman and Tom Hughes — reflect on the magical episode.
Robert and Cora Crawley, the Earl and Countess of Grantham, have weathered many storms. In this two-for-one episode, Hugh Bonneville (Robert) and Elizabeth McGovern (Cora) reflect on the six years they spent playing the heads of a very dramatic household.
Warning: this episode contains Victoria spoilers.
Ernest, the charming royal German rogue of Victoria, has a reputation for being a kind of happy-go-lucky courtier. But his personal journey this season — from his dying father to his catastrophic medical condition — leaves actor David Oakes wishing somebody else in court would take the time to ask how Ernest is feeling. Oakes explains why he sees Ernest as the Jiminy Cricket to Prince Albert's Pinocchio, and offers his previews of the closing half of this second season of Victoria.
Warning: this episode contains Victoria spoilers.
Prince Albert is purely logical — which makes Tom Hughes’ search for emotional depths all the more challenging in this second season of *Victoria. *The actor keeps a close eye on his character's historical experiences, all the while digging for the motivating forces that help push his character through challenging new crises.