‘Downton Abbey’ creator Julian Fellowes takes on Trollope for TV

Julian Fellowes, the British novelist best known for creating the television sensation “Dowton Abbey,” is turning next to Anthony Trollope.

Fellowes will adapt Trollope’s “Doctor Thorne” for television, the BBC reports. Published in 1858, “Doctor Thorne” tells the story of a doctor and his niece in an English village and the families of wealth (and misfortune) who hope to find stability through marriage. There are dark secrets -- drinking! affairs! violence! -- and the doctor holds the key.

Calling himself a “lifetime devotee of Trollope,” Fellowes explained that he is his “favorite among the great 19th century English novelists and certainly the strongest influence over my work that I am conscious of.” Fellowes “could not be more delighted” to adapt “Doctor Thorne.”


Although the book clocks in at more than 500 pages, Fellowes plans to boil it down to a three-part series.

Of the book, Trollope himself wrote, “The plot ... is good, and I am led therefore to suppose that a good plot -- which, to my feeling, is the most insignificant part of a tale -- is that which will most raise it or most condemn it in the public judgment.”

“Doctor Thorne” is being writtten for ITV.

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