Press Release: Julian Fellowes's Belgravia — A Groundbreaking New Publishing Project — To Be Launched by Grand Central Publishing in April 2016
NEW YORK—January 4, 2016—Grand Central Publishing (GCP) is excited to announce a groundbreaking new publishing project by Downton Abbey creator, Julian Fellowes. GCP acquired the North American rights to the project – Julian Fellowes’s BELGRAVIA -- from Orion Publishing, a division of Hachette UK.
Julian Fellowes’s BELGRAVIA is a story told in a prologue and 10 installments published week by week in the tradition of Charles Dickens, delivered in text and audio versions directly to your mobile, tablet or desktop via a brand new app. You can read it, or listen to it, or jump between the two.
The app will launch via the website www.julianfellowesbelgravia.com in April 2016, with the prologue free to download. Each of the 10 installments can then be purchased individually for $1.99 via the website or e-book retailers, and the entire series can be purchased through the website for $13.99 with the reader receiving an alert as soon as the next installment is available. The installments can also be listened to as audiobooks, available via the website, and the reader will be able to switch between reading and listening at any stage. There will be extra content, videos, and other bonus features such as music, character portraits, maps of Belgravia, family trees, and period fashions included within each installment. After the final installment has been published, Julian Fellowes’s BELGRAVIA will be published on July 5, 2016 as a $26.00 hardcover book.
Julian Fellowes’s BELGRAVIA is the story of a secret that unravels behind the porticoed doors of London’s grandest postcode. Set in the 1840s when the upper echelons of society began to rub shoulders with the emerging industrial nouveau riche, BELGRAVIA is peopled by a rich cast of characters. But the story begins on the eve of the Battle of Waterloo in 1815. At the Duchess of Richmond’s now legendary ball, one family’s life will change forever.
Fellowes will be joined on the project by Lindy Woodhead, author of Mr. Selfridge, as Historical Consultant, and Imogen Edwards-Jones, author of Hotel Babylon, as Editorial Consultant.
Julian Fellowes says: “I was very intrigued by the idea from the start. To marry the traditions of the Victorian novel to modern technology, allowing the reader (or listener) an involvement with the characters and the background of the story and the world in which it takes place that would not have been possible until now, and yet to preserve within that the strongest traditions of story-telling, seems to me a marvelous goal and a real adventure. I am thrilled that Grand Central will bring this to a US audience.”
Jamie Raab, President & Publisher of GCP says, “I can think of no author better suited to revitalize a grand old publishing tradition in such a fresh and exciting new way. GCP is delighted to be the North American publisher of Julian Fellowes’s BELGRAVIA, and I feel certain this unique publication will find a large and avid readership here.”
Julian Fellowes received the Academy Award for Best Original Screenplay for Gosford Park (2002), his first produced film. His work was also honored by the Writer’s Guild of America, The New York Film Critics’ Circle and the National Society of Film Critics for Best Screenplay. As creator, sole writer and executive producer of the smash hit series Downton Abbey, Fellowes has been nominated for eight Emmy Awards. He received Emmy Awards for writing and Outstanding Miniseries or Movie in the first season and a Special International Emmy after the last was shown in the UK. Downton Abbey, the highest rated drama in PBS’s history, is produced by Carnival Films & Television, a division of NBC Universal. MASTERPIECE is a co- producer of the series. Season 6 is the final season of the worldwide hit TV drama and premiered on ITV in the UK on September 20, 2015 and concluded on Christmas Day and will premiere on MASTERPIECE on PBS in the US on January 3, 2016.
In 2005, Fellowes made his directorial debut with the critically acclaimed Separate Lies, and received the Best Directorial Debut award from the National Board of Review. His second feature as both writer and director was From Time to Time, starring Maggie Smith, which won Best Picture at the Chicago Children’s Film Festival and the Fiuggi Family Festival in Rome.
Other writing credits for film include Piccadilly Jim (2004), Vanity Fair (2004), The Young Victoria (2009), The Tourist (2010), Romeo & Juliet (2013), and for television the four-hour mini-series Titanic (2012), and the upcoming three-part drama Doctor Thorne, both for ITV. Fellowes has also entered into a deal with NBC and Universal Television to create, write and produce the dramatic television series The Gilded Age.
Fellowes also wrote the “book” for the Tony nominated stage production of Mary Poppins. A co-production between Disney and Cameron Mackintosh, Mary Poppins ran for three years in the West End and was also a hit on Broadway for more than six years, playing to record -breaking audiences on its national and international tour. In addition, he wrote the book for School of Rock – The Musical which had its world premiere on Broadway, opening on December 6, 2015, and is written and produced by Andrew Lloyd Webber.
Fellowes has authored two novels: the international bestsellers Snobs (2005) and Past Imperfect (2008/2009), and the children’s book The Curious Adventures of the Abandoned Toys (2007). Scripts of the first three seasons of Downton Abbey that include notes by Fellowes have also been published.
Educated at Ampleforth College in Yorkshire and Magdalene College, Cambridge, Fellowes studied at the Webber Douglas Academy of Dramatic Art. He completed his training in repertory theatre at Northampton and Harrogate before making his West End début in A TOUCH OF SPRING.
Prior to his writing and directing career, Fellowes was known for his portrayal of the incorrigible Lord Kilwillie in the BBC’s Monarch of the Glen. Other acting credits include the BBC’s For the Greater Good and Aristocrats, and for the films Shadowlands, Damage, Place Vendome, and Tomorrow Never Dies.
In January 2011, Fellowes was given a peerage and entered the House of Lords as the Lord Fellowes of West Stafford.
Fellowes lives with his wife, Emma, and their son, Peregrine, in London and Dorset, England.
Lindy Woodhead is the author of two acclaimed books, War Paint: Helena Rubinstein and Elizabeth Arden, Their Lives, Their Times, Their Rivalry (2003) and Shopping, Seduction & Mr Selfridge (2007), which was adapted by Andrew Davies into the hugely successful Sunday night drama series Mr. Selfridge. Made by ITV Studios and co-produced with Masterpiece -PBS in the USA, Season One of Mr. Selfridge opened in January 2013 to an audience of 8.5 million. In June 2016, the Goodman Theatre Chicago will stage the world premiere of the musical based on War Paint. Married with two sons, Lindy divides her time between Oxfordshire and London and is a Fellow of the Royal Society of Arts.
Imogen Edwards-Jones is an international bestselling author, columnist and scriptwriter. She is probably best known for the Babylon series of books which sold over one million copies in the UK and went on to inspire the BBC1 hit TV series Hotel Babylon. She lives with her husband and two children in West London.
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Hachette Book Group is a leading trade publisher based in New York and a division of Hachette Livre, the third-largest trade and educational publisher in the world. HBG publishes under the divisions of Little, Brown and Company, Little Brown Books for Young Readers, Grand Central Publishing, Orbit, Hachette Books, Hachette Nashville, and Hachette Audio.