SEBASTIAN SHAKESPEARE Laura Carmichael to star in thriller 

jual plotter – http://Plotterku.com/; Downton Abbey turned her into a star, but Laura Carmichael claims she’s ignoring advice given by its creator to stick to period dramas

Downton Abbey turned her into a star, but Laura Carmichael claims she’s ignoring advice given by its creator to stick to period dramas.

The actress played dowdy middle sister Lady Edith in the hit ITV series and film, but is now starring in a contemporary thriller The Secrets She Keeps.

According to Laura, Julian Fellowes told her: ‘Don’t try and destroy an image that people have of you, that they enjoy.’

The star (below, right, with Michelle Dockery in Downton) says: ‘I can understand the logic in it, but I also think there’s something in actors that you want to . . . flex every muscle and push yourself, and do something different.’

However, Oscar-winnner Lord Fellowes tells me: ‘She has slightly misunderstood me. I would never advise anyone to stick to period drama, any more than I would tell someone to avoid comedy.

‘I was talking about the propensity among British actors to demonstrate their versatility at the first possible opportunity, while American actors tend to allow a certain perception of themselves to take root among audiences . . . only then do they start to diversify.

‘But I certainly agree with Laura that a wide range of performances should be part of any successful acting career. The difference, if there is one, is only about the journey most likely to get to that goal.’

The star (below, right, with Michelle Dockery in Downton) says: ‘I can understand the logic in it, but I also think there’s something in actors that you want to . . . flex every muscle and push yourself, and do something different’

 

It’s The Wombles v Tom Watson. Mike Batt, composer of the furry creatures’ hits, is furious that the former Labour deputy leader has been awarded a cushy role as chairman of the UK Music lobbying body. 

Watson is ‘arguably equally reviled on both Left and Right of politics,’ says Batt. 

‘If the British music industry is to continue to thrive, it must have access to a sympathetic ear in Government — and that’s currently Conservative.’ Savaged by Orinoco!

 

Home alone — Anthea’s ex has lockdown blues

While Anthea Turner is busy planning her wedding to socialite Mark Armstrong, the television personality’s former husband, Grant Bovey, has found his love life taking a turn for the worse.

‘I live alone so I’m just at home abiding by the lockdown rules,’ the property tycoon tells me.

‘I was dating, but I’m not in what I would call a steady relationship at the moment. When you can’t see each other, it’s tough — and virtual dates aren’t quite the same.’

Bovey, who was married to the former Blue Peter presenter for 12 years, adds: ‘It was my birthday last month and my daughter Lily’s 28th birthday this week, so that was very strange. I haven’t seen my kids for a month.’ 

 

Chat show legend Sir Michael Parkinson has always been proud of his working-class Yorkshire roots. And he’s using lockdown to record them for posterity.

He is writing a book with his son Michael Jr about his father, Jack, who died of lung disease from inhaling coal dust. 

‘It’s about the wonderful relationship I had with my dad and his life working in the coal mines,’ Parky tells me.

‘It will also be about grief and how you deal with it.’

 

Chore Royal Cleanliness mopping up

Sarah, Duchess of York is pictured mopping the floor of the royal residence at Windsor which she shares with her former husband, Prince Andrew

She may be a duchess who lives at Royal Lodge, but Fergie has proved she’s not afraid of getting her hands dirty.

Sarah, Duchess of York is pictured mopping the floor of the royal residence at Windsor which she shares with her former husband, Prince Andrew. 

The photograph was shared online by her aide Antonia Marshall, who commented: ‘It’s chore time.’

As a teenager in the Seventies, Fergie worked as a cleaner. But her sister, Jane, nevertheless smelled a rat, remarking: ‘What? That’s a first. The floor looks dry, too.’ Can’t sisters be awfully cynical?

Happy birthday to One! Fogle wants us to sing on our doorsteps for the Queen

Thursday night’s ‘clap for carers’ has not only inspired exhausted NHS workers, it has also helped people get to know neighbours they had rarely spoken to before lockdown.

Now, Ben Fogle wants to bring the country together in the same way to celebrate the Queen’s birthday.

He’s launching a campaign to encourage the nation to gather on their doorsteps to sing Happy Birthday to Her Majesty at 9am next Tuesday, when she will be 94.

‘It was actually my daughter Iona’s idea,’ the television adventurer tells me. ‘Her ninth birthday is on May 26 and she got a bit sad not being able to see her friends.

‘We started talking about different people’s birthdays and she asked when the Queen’s birthday was. I said it was next week and she said: “What if everyone sang Happy Birthday?”

‘The more I thought about it, the more it sounded like a nice, rousing opportunity.’

Fogle, who has made television programmes with the Duke of Cambridge and attended the royal wedding at Westminster Abbey with his wife, Marina, says: ‘Imagine if the whole country, or lots of the country anyway, could come out and sing Happy Birthday from their windows, balconies, doorsteps and roofs.’

The son of television vet Bruce Fogle was inspired by the monarch’s broadcast about the coronavirus crisis. 

‘When I watched the Queen’s speech, I was so touched because I thought it was tinged with personal sadness from her,’ he says.

‘I think the Queen feels the same sentiment as we do: the sadness for the tragic losses we are having; the danger that NHS workers are in; her own family, I suppose like everyone else, worrying about her husband; all of those things.

‘Her words “We will meet again” were so inspiring. I found it very moving and uplifting. I find her an inspiration.’

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National treasure Sir David Attenborough says some things still make him angry.

‘I get letters that make me go absolutely spare,’ the television naturalist admits.

‘I got sent one letter about how important it was to care for the planet, which was sent in a completely pointless plastic envelope. Ludicrous.’

He tries to take more care: ‘I live in a reasonably modest fashion. I don’t believe in excess, in luxury.’

Then he adds quickly: ‘I must be careful, though, or I’ll end up sounding like St Francis.’

National treasure Sir David Attenborough says some things still make him angry. ‘I get letters that make me go absolutely spare,’ the television naturalist admits

 

Veteran broadcaster and Strictly Come Dancing favourite John Sergeant was alarmed to see that he had turned 77 this week, according to the birthdays column of one newspaper.

‘At my age, each year counts rather a lot,’ the former ITN political editor, who turned a mere 76 on Tuesday, observes wryly.

Well they do say that dancing keeps you young.

 

Countdown whizz Rachel is loving her new addition

Lockdown is strictly baby-bonding time for Rachel Riley. The Countdown co-host, who gave birth to her first child with Russian-born dancer Pasha Kovalev just before Christmas, has shared this adorable picture of herself with their daughter, Maven.

‘Four months together already,’ Rachel says. ‘There really is nothing like it.’

The Oxford graduate met Pasha when he was her partner on Strictly Come Dancing in 2013.

They exchanged vows in Las Vegas last year, shortly after announcing that she was pregnant.

The Countdown co-host, who gave birth to her first child with Russian-born dancer Pasha Kovalev just before Christmas, has shared this adorable picture of herself with their daughter, Maven

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