On-Air Highlights

Revisit Downton Abbey

Written by Fred Vigeant, Director of Programming and Promotions for TV and Radio | Nov 18, 2012 8:33 AM
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The extraordinarily popular PBS series Downton Abbey, created by Academy Award-winning writer Julian Fellowes, tells the story of the noble Crawley family and the staff who serve them in their sumptuous Yorkshire estate. witf presents season 3 beginning in January 2013.

Join Dame Maggie Smith, Elizabeth McGovern, Hugh Bonneville, Dan Stevens, Michelle Dockery, Siobhan Finneran and many more of the series’ most popular actors for Downton Abbey Revisited, a fond recollection of favorite moments from Seasons 1 and 2, plus interviews with the actors and creative team and rare behind-the-scenes footage. Hosted by Angela Lansbury (an unabashed “Downton Abbey” fan), Downton Abbey Revisited premieres Sunday, November 25th at 8pm. It will repeat on witf Monday November 26th at 1pm, Thursday November 29th at 8pm, December 4 at 8 pm, December 5 at 1 am, December 9 at 8 pm and 9:30 pm.

Interviews with creators Julian Fellowes and Gareth Neame reveal the origins of the series and how they envisioned it as a combination of Edwardian-era tradition with modern multi-character storytelling. Hugh Bonneville talks about Robert, the Earl of Grantham’s relationship with the mother of all mothers, Violet, the Dowager Countess of Grantham (Dame Maggie Smith). Masterpiece executive producer Rebecca Eaton describes the interaction between Violet and new character Martha Levinson, played by Shirley MacLaine. Joanne Froggatt, who plays Anna, says that watching the two legends exchange slights was “like history being made.”

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Fashion plays a starring role in the series, with downstairs women revealing that they have “costume envy” and that Elizabeth McGovern wages a “battle with corsets.” The romances of Downton Abbey provide many of the series’ favorite moments, and the relationships between Cora and Robert, Bates and Anna and, of course, the star-crossed lovers Matthew and Mary, are discussed by the actors.

Downton Abbey Revisited also offers a tantalizing sneak peek at what’s in store for the characters as they enter the Roaring Twenties in Season 3. Will Bates be released from prison? What new mischief will Thomas, the villainous footman, and O’Brien, his scheming ally, get up to? Will wedding bells finally ring for Matthew and Lady Mary? And how will the formidable Dowager Countess (Dame Maggie Smith) handle the arrival of Lady Grantham’s American mother (Shirley MacLaine)?

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