PBS dramas

“Downton” movie heads to TV — twice

PBS has some good news for fans of dramas that are large, lush and (of course) British.
The movie version of “Downton Abbey” (shown here) will air twice – on Christmas Day and on Jan. 2. It will be alongside two other favorites (“Call the Midwife” and “All Creatures Great and Small”) and something new – David Tennant in an eight-part mini-series, “Around the World in 80 Days.” Read more…

PBS dramas: “Grantchester” soon, “Sanditon” later

For fans of the lush “Sanditon” series (shown hee), PBS has semi-encouaging news:
It will be back … well, sometime. And probably in 2022.
“They are just about three weeks into filming now,” Susanne Simpson, the “Masterpiece” producer, told the Television Critics Association. “But you will see ‘Sanditon’ next year.”
Based on a novel that Jane Austen had barely started, the show created a seaside world filled with schemes, ambition and romance. It drew mildly favorable reviews from critics and strongly favorable comments from viewers … but the British company that created it decided against a second season. Read more…

TV this fall? PBS plans music, drama, zombies

As TV networks’ fall plans sputter, there’s a counterpoint:
PBS still has big plans for the season. That includes concerts (including Lea Salonga, shown here), dramas, politics, nature and whimsy.
Well, not a lot of whimsy. (This is PBS, after all.) But it will air “History of Zombies” on the eve of Halloween and visit “Santa’s Wild Home” before Christmas; it will also have a jazz tribute to “Sesame Street,” visit tropical islands and board the queen’s plane. Read more…