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Tag: Things That Are British (21-30 of 55)

'Pride and Prejudice' celebrates 200 years: Its influence on modern pop culture

It is a truth universally acknowledged that Pride and Prejudice – first published in three volumes in January, 1813 – has left quite a mark on pop culture, far larger than Jane Austen herself could have ever envisioned. In celebration of the book’s 200th (!) anniversary, EW is singling out (in honor of literature’s favorite single gal) our favorite pop culture gems that we can trace back to an origin at Pemberley. We all may have eaten up the 2005 movie adaptation starring Keira Knightley, or other modern-day films that celebrate Austen such as The Jane Austen Book Club, but that’s only scratching the surface of Austen’s pop culture superpowers — and the lovefest isn’t slowing down anytime soon. Austenland, a new movie starring Keri Russell, premiered at Sundance last week. Read on below for more things we can thank Pride and Prejudice for in modern pop culture, and definitely give a shout out to your favorites in the comments.

Colin Firth: Not to diminish his Oscar for The King’s Speech, but Firth owes his career to Pride and Prejudice. Not only did he tackle the role of Mr. Darcy in the iconic 1995 British miniseries, but his performance in that version inspired Helen Fielding to write Bridget Jones’s Diary, which is basically just a modern-day Pride and Prejudice. The best part? Firth of course agreed to star in the movie version, playing a character named Mark Darcy. That’s a whole heck of a lot of pop culture gold all beginning with Ms. Austen. READ FULL STORY

Watch 'Downton Abbey' as a video game -- VIDEO

In real life, Downton Abbey is a salad-fork-on-the-outside dressing room drama from Britain, whose most dramatic moments involve snobbery (deflected, deferred or delayed).

But in Bill Kiley’s world, Downton Abbey is a video game — for Super Nintendo.

Kiley recently released his vision of the Abbey-as-sidescroller on YouTube. In it, you assume the role of a new footman at the manor, completing quests in the form of running minor errands or sussing out small scandals.


Prince Harry apologizes for naked pictures: 'I let my family down'

Let’s take a break from discussing today’s big scandal to talk about last summer’s big scandal — namely, Prince Harry’s naked Vegas pics.

Though the incident didn’t prevent the royal from being named the world’s most eligible bachelor earlier this month, Harry still regrets it. “I probably let myself down, I let my family down, I let other people down,” he told People during a recent interview at his military base in Afghanistan. (You know, the context in which it makes most sense to talk about your nudie photos.)


Gingerbread Downton Abbey construction will mesmerize and amaze you -- VIDEO

Cookie artist Curtis Jensen just made your gingerbread house look like the servants’ quarters.

Every year, this marketing director from Utah creates an elaborate mini-building using just gingerbread, icing, candy and the occasional inedible structural support. In 2011, Jensen tackled Notre Dame; this winter, he set his sights on Downton Abbey, the formidable estate at the center of Julian Fellowes’s eponymous drama.

Whether you watch the show religiously or still think it’s called Downtown Abbey, you’ll be entranced by this video of Jensen’s methodical construction — a time-lapse clip hypnotically scored by an extended version of the Downton Abbey theme song.


'Downton Abbey' cast goes downtown on NYC subway -- PHOTO

This weekend, the cast of Downton Abbey visited New York City and, like the awesome people they are, posed under a “downtown” sign for the New York City subway, with the “w” appropriately covered. Check out the photo, courtesy of the Earl of Grantham’s Twitter page, below:


From left to right, that’s Rob James-Collier (Thomas), Hugh Bonneville (the Earl of Grantham, a.k.a. Robert Crawley), Sophie McShera (Daisy), Joanne Froggatt (Anna), and Brendan Coyle (Bates). My thoughts, in no particular order:

1. Brendan seems to have been channeling Bates.

2. Rob is hot. I feel better about being a Thomas fan.

3. Thought bubble over Joanne’s head: “Brendan’s going to crush me.” Also: “Where’s that hand going?”

4. Do those people in the background not realize that’s the cast of Downton Abbey?! Hoodie person, pull down your hoodie and turn around!

5. Does this mean I can pronounce the “w”?

6. Rob is really, really hot.

Cutest cast photo ever, or what? Were any of you among the lucky few who saw these guys at the Knicks game? Make the rest of us feel jealous in the comments.

Read more:
PBS releases ‘Downton Abbey’ T-shirts and more merch
‘Downton Abbey': Here Comes the Bride!
‘Downton Abbey’ season 4 might be here sooner than you think

Jon Hamm and Daniel Radcliffe on playing each other in upcoming miniseries -- VIDEO

Are Harry Potter and Don Draper two great tastes that taste great together? We’ll find out after the premiere of A Young Doctor’s Notebook, a British miniseries that features Jon Hamm and Daniel Radcliffe playing the titular doctor at different points in his life. Yes, the doctor is British; yes, that does mean Hamm will be speaking in an accent; yes, I understand if you need to go get your smelling salts.

Back? For your delicate constitution’s sake, you may be relieved to know that we don’t hear British Hamm in this behind-the-scenes video. We do, however, get to see both stars enthusing about the project, as well as a glimpse at its “darkly comic” situations — including Radcliffe nonchalantly saying “right then!” after sawing off a corpse’s leg and donning a dead doctor’s apron, then being told that the deceased “was a lot taller than you.”

All told, A Young Doctor’s Notebook looks pretty charming — but considering its stars, how could it not be? Take a look at the miniseries below, courtesy of The Guardian.


J.K. Rowling sells her 'Harry Potter' house for $3.6 million

Just when you thought shelling out for the $1,000 limited edition box set was a splurge, J.K. Rowling has sold the home in which she wrote four of the seven Harry Potter books for over $3.6 million. Now there’s a real fan.

The 19th-century Victorian mansion defied the lackluster Edinburgh housing market and sold after just three short weeks, becoming one of only six properties in the Merchiston area to go for over $3.2 million this year. Rowling resided in the home from 1999 to 2009, initially purchasing the top half of the mansion before later buying out her downstairs neighbor to convert the mansion into a single property. READ FULL STORY

In defense of 'Die Another Day': Thirteen reasons why Pierce Brosnan's last Bond film is better, weirder, and more wonderful than you remember

Ten years after Pierce Brosnan’s final turn as 007, the reputation of his whole James Bond era has suffered considerably. Conventional wisdom holds that Brosnan came out the gate strongly (Goldeneye, Xenia Onatopp, “For England, James?”) but then went off the rails. His films trended silly (Tomorrow Never Dies, Evil Rupert Murdoch, “You always were a cunning linguist”) and sillier (The World Is Not Enough, the guy from Full Monty playing an invincible Russian, “I thought Christmas only comes once a year.”) When Casino Royale hit theaters in 2006, it was praised for its realism, its serious tone, its resolute unwillingness to fall victim to Bond cliché. It was a complete refutation of what had come before. And what it was refuting, nominally, was Die Another Day. An exercise in pure blockbuster decadence, Die Another Day has become synonymous with a certain kind of overstuffed travesty. It features an invisible car, an ice palace, a sun laser, and a cameo from Madonna; it’s hard to know which of those things is more ridiculous.

But I don’t think Die Another Day deserves its toxic reputation. Viewed today, it looks almost ancient in some ways; and yet, in other ways, it seems to anticipate a whole host of action movie tropes that would come to define the ensuing decade. In hindsight, it looks a little bit like the franchise’s attempt at a superhero movie, in the same sense that Moonraker was an attempt at science-fiction and Licence to Kill was a stealth Miami Vice adaptation. It is an insane, helplessly silly movie; and yet, in its own way, it forms an essential companion piece to this weekend’s Skyfall. Forthwith, some important points to consider when we talk about Die Another Day: READ FULL STORY

Poor Lady Edith: Outburst interrupts 'Downton' star's play

Lady Edith really can’t catch a break. First Mary ruins her engagement to Sir Anthony — and now this?

The BBC is reporting that British theater vet Sir Peter Hall — founder of the Royal Shakespeare Company — has apologized to Downton Abbey star Laura Carmichael after disrupting the opening night of her new play, a production of Uncle Vanya in London’s West End.

Playgoers this weekend said that the 81-year-old Hall heckled the production’s actors, reportedly shouting, “Stop, stop, stop! It doesn’t work and you don’t work. It is not good enough. I could be at home watching television.” The disruption came as Carmichael was delivering her final lines as Sonya, a plain girl of marriageable age. (Sound familiar?)

Hall, to his credit, swiftly issued a long and sincere apology for his behavior:


Daniel Day-Lewis clarifies that he did not see the ghost of his father while performing 'Hamlet'

The career of actor Daniel Day-Lewis is littered with myth and legend and barely-possible facts. Day-Lewis’ religious devotion to the Method — the full-immersion preparation for an acting role — has created a whole series of fantastical stories. When he played a painter with cerebral palsy in My Left Foot, he really never left his wheelchair. When he played a colonial adventurer in The Last of the Mohicans, he really lived in the wilderness and carved his own canoe. When he played a man working on a bad movie in Nine, he was really working on a bad movie. But one tale from early in Day-Lewis’ career crosses the line into pure mysticism. Back in 1989, Day-Lewis was performing the lead in Hamlet in London. He left in the middle of a performance — supposedly because he had actually seen the ghost of his dead father onstage. READ FULL STORY

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