Thursday, February 5, 2015

Aidan Turner: They're calling him tall, "Poldark" and handsome!


Funny how we learn things, isn't it? I've been following the adaptation of Jim Sheridan's The Secret Scripture, which is currently shooting in the village of Inistioge in Kilkenny, Ireland. A few weeks ago, reader Annie L. turned me on to the fact that actor Aidan Turner had joined the cast which includes Rooney Mara, Theo James, and Jack Reynor,  neither of us quite sure what role he'll play. The mystery had me curious about Turner though and a very quick search revealed he plays Kili in The Hobbit, something quite a few of you Hobbit fans already know — I'm sorry, by the way, I know I give short shrift to the Tolkein classic but I'm not big on fantasy, as you may have noticed.


But this is where I learned something that's got me more than a little jazzed, because I am big on historical dramas. Aidan Turner is also in the upcoming reboot of Poldark coming to Masterpiece theatre sometime this year in an eight-part series. In fact he stars in the titular role, and yes, people — entertainment writers, anyway, — are calling him tall, 'Poldark' and handsome. Poldark is an old BBC show from the 70's starring Robin Ellis as Ross Polkdark, a British soldier who returns to Cornwall after fighting in the Revolutionary War. In a nice bit of meta casting, Ellis makes an appearance in the new series as the Reverend Halse. Eleanor Tomlinson (Death Comes to Pemberley, Jack the Giant Slayer) is Demelza with Heida Reed (Jo, One Day) as Elizabeth Chenoweth. Then there's the gorgeous Cornwall coast and countryside, that's going to be a big draw for me as well.


UPDATE: 2/5/2015 According to PBS tumblr, Poldark is coming to US on June 14th, while the UK will get it earlier, natch,  in March.  I can share this tiny teaser trailer which the Daily Mail unabashedly calls 'steamy.'



I don't remember the original at all but I was way too busy as a twenty-something doing things in the 70's — we loved our TV back then but we weren't quite as glued to it as people are now — but the program was based on a series of historical novels by Winston Graham about the soldier, Ross Poldark,  the first being Ross Poldark, A Novel of Cornwall. 


Here's how the bookish folks at B&N sum it up:

A gorgeous new release of the heartwarming and hilarious first novel in the Poldark series, the subject of the landmark BBC series
Ross Poldark is a heartwarming, gripping, and utterly entertaining saga that brings to life an unforgettable cast of characters and one of the greatest love stories of our age.
Ross Poldark returns to Cornwall from war, looking forward to a joyful homecoming with his family and his beloved Elizabeth. But instead he discovers that his father has died, his home is overrun by livestock and drunken servants, and Elizabeth, having believed Ross dead, is now engaged to his cousin. Ross must start over, building a completely new path for his life, one that takes him in exciting and unexpected directions…
Thus begins an intricately plotted story spanning loves, lives, and generations. The Poldark series is the masterwork of Winston Graham, who evoked the period and people like only he could, and created a world of rich and poor, loss and love, that readers will not soon forget.
Since the teaser is so short (and steamy) let's take a trip in our time machine back to the 70's and watch this clip from the original.






This looks pretty broad to me; based on that steamy little snippet from this years iteration, I have a feeling the Aiden Turner version will be a tad more reality based. Another reason to stay glued to Masterpiece, where I'll be watching Wolf Hall come this April. Anyone following along with me on what I'm pretentiously calling Wolf Hall Wednesdays? It's where I'm posting thoughts and pictures as I read Hilary Mantel's Wolf Hall and Bring Up the Bodies in chunks of a hundred pages or so, in preparation for the series arrival here in the states. I'll have a new post up tomorrow.

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