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Julian Fellowes writes new ITV series Doctor Thorne

Published: Mon 27 Apr 2015

Academy award winning writer Julian Fellowes is to adapt one of his favourite novels by one of his favourite writers for ITV.
 
Doctor Thorne by Anthony Trollope is the story of Dr Thomas Thorne, who lives in the village of Greshamsbury in Barsetshire, with his beautiful niece, Mary, a girl blessed with every gift  except money.  Mary Thorne has grown up alongside the Gresham sisters – Augusta, Beatrice and Alexandrina and their handsome brother Frank  – whose home is the great house and estate at Greshamsbury Park. 
 
When the terrifying Lady Arabella Gresham discovers that her darling son, Frank, has fallen in love with Dr Thorne’s penniless niece, she is horrified.  Her husband has frittered away the family fortune and is only being kept afloat by very favourable loans that Dr Thorne has secured from a railway millionaire, Sir Roger Scatcherd. However, Sir Roger is drinking himself into an early grave and the financial future is uncertain, so Lady Arabella believes it is her son’s duty to make a rich marriage to save the family estate and launches a campaign to secure her son an heiress for a bride.
 
The three-part drama will be produced by Hat Trick Productions. 
 
ITV’s Director of Drama Steve November and Controller of Drama Victoria Fea have commissioned Doctor Thorne.
 
“We’re delighted to be working with Julian once again on the drama Doctor Thorne,” said Steve.  “It’s a rich and multi-layered story of class and social standing and a timeless love story which Julian has brought to life brilliantly with his inimitable wit and warmth,” said Steve.
Writer Julian Fellowes said: "As a lifetime devotee of Trollope, my own favourite among the great nineteenth century English novelists and certainly the strongest influence over my work that I am conscious of, it is tremendously exciting and satisfying to know that my adaptation of one of his best-loved novels is coming to ITV.  I could not be more delighted."
 
Doctor Thorne will be executive produced by Hat Trick’s Head of Drama Mark Redhead (Critical, The Suspicions of Mr Whicher, Case Sensitive) and Julian Fellowes with Chris Kelly and Ted Childs.
 
Filming will begin later this year.
 
Note to Editors: This month – April 2015 – marks the 200th anniversary since the birth of celebrated 19th Century novelist Anthony Trollope.