Surprise! NBC, Julian Fellowes to create U.S. 'Downton Abbey'

Bill Carter of the New York Times is reporting this week that US broadcast network NBC is partnering with Downton Abbey creator Julian Fellowes in the development of a new period drama set in New York during the 19th century. Fellowes will write and produce The Gilded Age, which will recreate New York society in the 1880s.

This was a vivid time with dizzying, brilliant ascents and calamitous falls, of record-breaking ostentation and savage rivalry; a time when money was king,” Fellowes said. NBC is describing the series as an “…epic tale of the princes of the American Renaissance, and the vast fortunes they made — and spent — in late 19th century New York.”

Earlier this month, Fellowes did visit the estate of Edith Wharton, the Mount in Lenox, Mass., which, most likely, will surely guide his drama for NBC on the Gilded Age in New York.

For those that suddenly find themselves in a sudden panic over the future of Downton Abbey,  rest assured that you can be confident in the fact that, according to all involved, Fellowes will develop The Gilded Age while continuing his work on Downton Abbey, which was last week renewed for a fourth season by UK commercial network ITV.

In the age of seemingly endless American re-makes of British telly, the only ‘surprise’ here is that the concept of a “U.S. Downton Abbey” took so long to materialize. After all, the ITV/PBS hit was just renewed for a fourth season this past week. Downton Abbey is produced by NBCUniversal-owned Carnival Films.

Photo credit: Lee Everett/The Mount, via Associated Press

In: Drama

  • I’d rather see a show about pre-Revolutionary War America. Lots of indentured servant stories to contrast with rich immigrant families.

  • jt

    Great news about another season of DA! I only hope The Gilded Age will turn out as well as DA. American telly has a way of screwing up British imports.