Julian Fellowes has adapted Doctor Thorne, one of his favorite novels, for the small screen, and ITV has just announced the cast for the miniseries.
London Critics Circle Film Awards winner Tom Hollander (Rev., The Night Manager, A Poet in New York), BAFTA winner Rebecca Front (Humans, Inspector Lewis, The Thick of It), and Golden Globe® winner Ian McShane (Lovejoy, Deadwood, The Pillars of the Earth) have been cast in the lead roles for Doctor Thorne, adapted from the classic Anthony Trollope novel by Academy Award®-winning Downton Abbey creator Julian Fellowes for ITV.
The cast also includes Critics Choice Television Awards winner Alison Brie (Community, Mad Men), Olivier Award winner Richard McCabe (Indian Summers, Wallander), Phoebe Nicholls (Fortitude, Downton Abbey), Gwyneth Keyworth (Game of Thrones, Misfits), Kate O’Flynn (No Offence, The Palace), Edward Franklin (Doctors, Being Human), and newcomers Stefanie Martini, Harry Richardson, and Nell Barlow.
Dr. Thomas Thorne (Hollander) lives in the village of Greshamsbury, in Barsetshire, with his young niece Mary (Martini), a girl blessed with every gift except money. She grew up alongside the Gresham family, whose Greshamsbury Park home and social status dominate the county.
However, Francis Gresham Senior (McCabe) has frittered away the family fortune, and he, his wife Lady Arabella Gresham (Front), their daughters Augusta (Keyworth) and Beatrice (Barlow), and son Frank (Richardson) face losing their home.
Francis is only kept afloat by loans that Dr. Thorne has secured from railway millionaire Sir Roger Scatcherd (McShane). But Sir Roger is drinking himself into an early grave, so the family’s financial future lies with his unreliable son Louis (Franklin).
When Lady Arabella discovers that her darling and handsome son has fallen in love with Thorne’s penniless niece, she is horrified, as she believes it is Frank’s duty to make a rich marriage to save the family estate. Thus, she launches a campaign to secure for him an heiress as a bride, aided by her scheming sister-in-law, the very grand Countess De Courcy (Nicholls), and her conniving niece Alexandrina De Courcy (O’Flynn). Their target: wealthy American heiress Miss Martha Dunstable (Brie).
Said Julian Fellowes, “Doctor Thorne is a wonderful example of Trollope’s gift for understanding the tangles we humans get into. He is sharply observant, critical and merciful in equal measure and, above all, highly entertaining.”
Additional cast members include Cressida Bonas (Tulip Fever) as Mary’s friend and confidante Patience Oriel; Danny Kirrane (Critical) as Lady Augusta’s wealthy but ill-mannered fiancé Mr. Moffatt; Janine Duvitski (Little Dorrit) as Lady Scatcherd; and Tom Bell (Humans) as Lord Porlock.
A Hat Trick Productions, the three-part Doctor Thorne is being directed by Niall McCormick (The Game), produced by Helen Gregory (Case Histories), and executive produced by Julian Fellowes with Hat Trick’s Head of Drama Mark Redhead (The Suspicions of Mr. Whicher), Harvey Weinstein, Bob Weinstein, Christopher Kelly, and Ted Childs.
Hat Trick International is handling international distribution with The Weinstein Company, which has North American rights.
Filming of Doctor Thorne begins this month. Stay tuned for updates.
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