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Fun Friday—Cranford Part 2

Friday, May 9, 2008

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The second part of Cranford airs this Sunday on most PBS stations.

As winter approaches, Cranford is beset by sorrows
and struggles to regain confidence.

Like the second act of any dramatic work, the second part of Cranford is most likely the darkest, most conflict-filled. It is lovingly and beautifully written and acted—the whole thing is—so be sure to tune in.

I started reading the first of the three books upon which the miniseries is based, Cranford, last weekend. Not only was I amazed at how well Heidi Thomas interpreted the mostly-narrative style of the work into action and dialogue, but I was floored by how totally different Mrs. Gaskell’s writing style is from the style she employed in North & South. Reading Cranford is like reading a breezy, conversational hen lit novel. Here’s my favorite passage so far:

When Mrs. Forrester, for instance, gave a party in her baby-house of a dwelling . . . [we] talked on about household forms and ceremonies as if we all believed that our hostess had a regular servants’ hall, second table, with housekeeper and steward, instead of the one little charity-school maiden, whose short ruddy arms could never have been strong enough to carry the tray upstairs, if she had not been assisted in private by her mistress, who now sat in state, pretending not to know what cakes were sent up, though she knew, and we knew, and she knew that we knew, and we knew that she knew that we knew she had been busy all the morning making tea-bread and sponge-cakes.

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Now, for some more actor connections, this time to the Horatio Hornblower movies!

Greg Wise (Sir Charles Maulver) played Major Andre Cotard in Hornblower: Duty and Loyalty.

Barbara Flynn (Mrs. Jamieson) played Mrs. Mason in Hornblower: Duty and Loyalty.

Philip Glenister (Mr. Carter) played Gunner Hobbs in Hornblower: Mutiny and Retribution.

Julia Sawalha (Miss Jessie Brown) played Maria Mason-Hornblower in Hornblower: Duty and Loyalty.

Jim Carter (Captain Brown) played Etheridge in Hornblower: Duty.

Simon Woods (Dr. Harrison) was in Rome (HBO series) with Ray Stevenson, who was in King Arthur with Ioan Gruffudd (Horatio Hornblower), and Ciaran Hinds, who was in Amazing Grace with Ioan Gruffudd. Was in Angel with Romola Garai, who was in Amazing Grace with Ioan Gruffudd (Horatio). Was in Cambridge Spies with Samuel West (Major Edrington, Hornblower: Frogs & Lobsters).

Judi Dench (Matty Jenkyns) was in Ladies in Lavender with David Warner (Capt. James Sawyer, Mutiny and Retribution); Toby Jones, who was in Amazing Grace with Ioan Gruffudd; and Dame Maggie Smith, who was in Harry Potter and the Chamber of Secrets with Christian Coulson (M’man Jack Hammond, Hornblower:Loyalty).

Lisa Dillon (Mary Smith) was in Hawking with Benedict Cumberbatch, who was in Amazing Grace with Ioan Gruffudd; was in Bright Young Things with Jim Carter (Etheridge, Hornblower: Duty) and Stephen Campbell Moore, who was also in Amazing Grace; was in Cambridge Spies with Samuel West (Major Edrington, Frogs & Lobsters).

Imelda Staunton (Miss Pole) was in Bright Young Things with Jim Carter (Etheridge, Duty) and Stephen Campbell Moore, who was also in Amazing Grace; was in Cambridge Spies with Samuel West (Major Edrington, Frogs & Lobsters). Was in Harry Potter and the Order of the Phoenix with Jim McManus (Pawnbroker, Hornblower: Loyalty).

Julia McKenzie (Mrs. Forrester) was in Bright Young Things with Jim Carter (Etheridge, Duty) and Stephen Campbell Moore, who was also in Amazing Grace with Ioan Gruffudd.

Alex Etel (Harry Gregson) was in Millions with Christopher Fulford (M’man Hunter, Hornblower: The Duchess and the Devil).

Kimberly Nixon (Miss Hutton) is in the upcoming Easy Virtue with Georgie Glen, who was in Amazing Grace with Ioan Gruffudd and who also guest-starred in an episode of the TV series My Family starring Sir Robert Lindsay (Admiral Sir Edward Pellew). She was in Wild Child with Shirley Henderson, who was in Harry Potter and the Chamber of Secrets with Christian Coulson (M’man Jack Hammond, Loyalty).

Deborah Findlay (Miss Tomkinson) was in Vanity Fair with Romola Garai, who was in Amazing Grace with Ioan Gruffudd (Horatio), and was in Wives & Daughters with Barbara Flynn (Mrs. Mason, Duty and Loyalty).

Selina Griffiths (Caroline Tomkinson) was in The Scarlet Pimpernel (1999) with Jonathan Coy (Lt./Capt. Bracegirdle, Hornblower: The Fire Ships, The Duchess and the Devil, Frogs & Lobsters, Duty) and Jim Carter (Etheridge, Duty).

Claudie Blakley (Martha) was in The Inspector Lynley Mysteries: Seed of Cunning with Tony Haygarth (Master Prowse, Duty and Loyalty). Was in Gosford Park with Maggie Smith, who was in Harry Potter/Chamber of Secrets with Christian Coulson (M’man Hammond, Loyalty) and HP/Order of the Phoenix with Jim McManus (Pawnbroker, Loyalty).

Francesca Annis (Lady Ludlow) was in Jericho: A Pair of Ragged Claws with Sir Robert Lindsay (Admiral Sir Edward Pellew) and Nicholas Jones (Lt. Buckland, Mutiny and Retribution). Was in Wives & Daughters with Barbara Flynn (Mrs. Mason, Duty and Loyalty).

Emma Fielding (Miss Galindo) was in The Inspector Lyndley Mysteries: A Great Deliverance with Nicholas Day, who was in Amazing Grace with Ioan Gruffudd (Horatio).

Adrian Scarborough (Mr. Johnson) was in Gosford Park with Maggie Smith, who was in Harry Potter/Chamber of Secrets with Christian Coulson (M’man Hammond, Loyalty) and HP/Order of the Phoenix with Jim McManus (Pawnbroker, Loyalty). Was in Bright Young Things with Jim Carter (Etheridge, Duty) and Stephen Campbell Moore, who was also in Amazing Grace with Ioan Gruffudd. Was in Maxwell with Duncan Bell (M’man Clayton, Hornblower: The Even Chance).

Andrew Buchan (Jem Hearne) was in If I Had You with Paul McGann (Lt. William Bush, Mutiny, Retribution, Duty, and Loyalty).

Joseph McFadden (Dr. Marshland) was in Small Faces with Ian McElhinney (Capt. Hammond, The Fire Ships, Retribution, and Loyalty).

Eileen Atkins (Miss Deborah Jenkyns) was in Gosford Park with Maggie Smith, who was in Harry Potter/Chamber of Secrets with Christian Coulson (M’man Hammond, Loyalty) and HP/Order of the Phoenix with Jim McManus (Pawnbroker, Loyalty). Was in Vanity Fair with Romola Garai, who was in Amazing Grace with Ioan Gruffudd (Horatio). Was in Marple: Towards Zero with Greg Wise (Maj. Cotard, Duty and Loyalty).

Michael Gambon (Mr. Holbrook) was in HP/Order of the Phoenix with Jim McManus (Pawnbroker, Loyalty). Was in Amazing Grace with Ioan Gruffudd (Horatio). Was in Wives & Daughters with Barbara Flynn (Mrs. Mason, Duty and Loyalty).

2 Comments
  1. Friday, May 9, 2008 7:28 am

    I love the Hornblower connections! It’s been so long since I’ve watched the series…I need to revisit that. 🙂 Being reminded of Julia S. in Hornblower reminds me of how much I couldn’t STAND her character…and how upset I STILL am that they ended the series the way they did. Tragic!!! 😛

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  2. Friday, May 9, 2008 12:28 pm

    Ioan wants to make more Hornblower movies, for the big screen, but he’s having trouble finding enough financing. He’s already secured the rights, just needs the money. I wonder if he’d take money from the fans….

    That is very cool how all those actors connect to him!

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