Monday Montage

What’s happening, what’s on and what’s interesting this week …

NYTimes correspondent Thomas Erdbrink shares a rare journey into a private Iran often at odds with its conservative clerics and leaders. Join FRONTLINE for OUR MAN IN TEHRAN – a two-night event, beginning tonight at 9 on UNC-TV.

Not only is there going to be a DOWNTON ABBEY film but you could win a trip to the set! You have to go to the Big Apple to make it happen. But still… not a bad get. Continue reading

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Where Do I Know That Actor? (Mamma Mia! Edition)

Every now and then, I like to veer slightly away from the small screen to make a big screen connection and, right now, there seems only one film deserving of such a look. The ABBA-inspired sequel Mamma Mia! Here We Go Again took in around $34 million in its opening weekend, placing it number two at the box office. Although I’ve not seen it myself I couldn’t help but be taken by all the familiar names and faces I spied viewing the trailer during a recent cinematic outing. Some may be obvious, but let’s take note of them all as best we can.

The hit movie stars Lilly James in the role of Young Donna in 1979. James may not be the biggest name in the cast but she should be among the best well-known of PBS-related stars since she played Lady Rose on Downton Abbey.

Meryl Streep, of course, plays Donna, reprising her role from the first film. Offhand, you might think Streep hasn’t been a presence on public broadcasting and, for the most part, you’d be right. However, imdb.com credits her with two roles on Great Performances – Edith Varney on Secret Service (1977) and Leilah on Uncommon Women… and Others (1979). Moreover, the acclaimed actress had appeared on American Masters, Live From Lincoln Center, the documentary series Freedom: A History of Us and the Ken Burns’ series The Roosevelts: An Intimate History, among others. So I think it’s safe to say Meryl Streep has a long and healthy PBS association. Continue reading

Wednesday Trivia Question

What series was James Parker talking about when he said in the January/February 2013 issue of The Atlantic: “Preposterous as history, preposterous as drama, the show succeeds magnificently as bad television. The dialogue spins light-operatically along in the service of multiplying plotlets, not too hard on the ear, although now and again a line lands like a tray of dropped spoons. The acting is superb—it has to be.” Continue reading

Where Do I Know That Actor?

Another week, another MIDSOMER MURDERS. This time, the episode in question (“Not In My Back Yard” Part One – in which members of the Midsomer Conservation Society are hunted by a mysterious killer) saw no less than nine special guest stars. Let’s get to them, shall we?

Peter Egan played retired accountant Norman Swanscombe. Going back to the late 1970s, Egan portrayed Oscar Wilde on Lillie, a Masterpiece Theatre presentation. In the 80s, he was Fothergill on Reilly: Ace Of Spies, Henry Simcox on Paradise Postponed, Magnus Pym on A Perfect Spy and David Braithwaite on Ever Decreasing Circles. There were some guest spots here and there (My Family, Grantchester, Inspector Lynley) but, more recently, Egan has been seen as Martin Hughes on Unforgotten and Hugh “Shrimpie” MacClare, Marquess of Flintshire on Downton Abbey. Continue reading

Monday Montage

What’s happening, what’s on and what’s interesting this week …

Twenty years ago, a woman sat on a jury ago that handed down the death penalty to a man convicted in a double homicide. Now, living with an unbearable feeling of guilt, she commits to tracking down her fellow jurors to tackle past demons. Tune in as POV presents LINDY LOU, JUROR NUMBER 2 – tonight at 10 on UNC-TV.

The DOWNTON ABBEY MOVIE is a go! By all reports, the hit MASTERPIECE series will make it to the big screen with most, if not all, of the original cast. Is it too early to Fandango that? [Update: Looks like Lily James is not part of the film.] Continue reading

Monday Montage

What’s happening, what’s on and what’s interesting this week …

Discover why the National Pyrotechnic Festival in Tultepec, Mexico, is a festival unlike any other in the world. POV presents BRIMSTONE & GLORY – tonight at 10 on UNC-TV.

Lily James (DOWNTON ABBEY) and Gillian Anderson (BLEAK HOUSE) are signed on to star in a stage adaptation of the Bette Davis film All About Eve next year in London.

Join Sue Perkins (THE GREAT BRITISH BAKING SHOW) as she travels from the Himalayas to the Bay of Bengal to explore THE GANGES. Don’t miss part one of this three-part adventure – Tuesday at 8pm on the Explorer Channel. Continue reading

Monday Montage

What’s happening, what’s on and what’s interesting this week …

Join Margaret Hoover for a public affairs talk show that delivers a civil and engaging contest of ideas among the brightest minds and freshest voices from across the political spectrum. Don’t miss FIRING LINE – Friday nights at 10:30 on the North Carolina Channel.

Michelle Dockery talks about life after Downton Abbey and her role in the Netflix western GODLESS. Continue reading