Anonymous asked:

How's your life been going madam!

In Actual Fact Mags Answer:

Thank you, very well :) Busy at my new (dream job) at the Danish Royal Theatre and working in Revue, so I can almost say that my life is quite close to perfect at the moment :)

TL;DR - I wax lyrical about Violet and her Russian Prince


Oh Julian, you giveth and then leave us dangling. First things first, I’m so delighted by the insight into Violet’s past - after four years (twelve in Downton land) of next to nothing with regard to Violet and who she really is, we finally get some glimpse into her life beyond the role of Dowager. I’ve always had a head canon for Violet and Lord Grantham that went along the lines of them being a couple who weren’t really in love when they got married, and eventually fell in love, but for a long time both had great difficulty showing it. Episode 5x04 sorts of placates the notion for me; I came away from the episode with the impression that Violet’s marriage during those early years wasn’t exactly a happy one for her - that Lord Grantham was too busy in his role as a member of Prince Alfred’s household to really bother much with his young wife back home and that whilst he may have loved her, he wasn’t good at showing it, and that as a consequence Violet was left feeling bored and rather lonely. It’s very easy to picture her on trips away with her husband, abandoned as he goes off and does whatever with the other men of the household — which is how I think she ended up with Prince Kuragin. He was immediately attracted to her and with her husband off being busy elsewhere, Violet blossomed under his attention and consideration of her. We don’t get any indication of how long the relationship between Kuragin and Violet lasted - I’m assuming it was confined to the duration of the Crawley’s Russian trip as Violet seems to indicate that it was the purchase of the Faberge frame (which I’m assuming was done so in Russia) with the pictures of her children that eventually made her “see sense”. Given that timescale though - we’re talking weeks, a couple of months at most - whatever happened between Violet and Kuragin must have been incredibly passionate and intense - I mean she makes clear that had it not been for her husband’s gift as a reminder to her of his feelings and her family, she would have abandoned both to run away with Kuragin. That is an incredible notion to think of Violet as entertaining - Violet, the bastion of tradition, throwing all that away, her family, her husband, her position in English society, to run away with a Russian Prince - and not alone that, a married one too! It would have been scandal upon scandal. She would have made Mary and Edith’s exploits seems downright prudish in comparison had she run away with Kuragin.

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I had to reblog this, because yet again, you read my mind Tess, but as usual you express the words so much better, than I :)

maggie smith downton abbey violet crawley prince kuragin please let the plotline continue


Sneak Peek at “Second Best Exotic Marigold Hotel”:

Dev Patel’s Sonny plays a central role this time around, as he struggles to balance expanding his hotel business and preparing to marry his beloved Sunaina (Tena Desae). Meanwhile, Evelyn (Dench) and Douglas (Nighy) continue to fall in love, and Madge (Celia Imrie) juggles two suitors. Muriel (Smith) is thriving as the hotel’s co-manager and secret-keeper. The story builds to the wedding, allowing for more scenes featuring the full cast.

"It’s hilarious working with those people," Madden says. "Everybody had worked with everybody, which created a nice, relaxed, utterly disrespectful atmosphere."

Though there was plenty of joking on set, Madden says none of the actors was difficult, even while shooting a party sequence for 12 nights in the frigid Indian winter.

"I had to persuade everybody to wait until I positioned them where I wanted them to be," he says. "It’s a testament to the fact that everybody approached the material in the same way that nobody ever questioned that."

Madden credits India as a key reason for the actors’ contentment.

"You just cannot escape the warmth, the lack of assumption, the positivity of the people," he says. "There’s something transforming about the place."

The new film also adds several prominent actors. Richard Gere and Tamsin Greig (TV’s Episodes) play Guy and Lavinia, two new hotel guests who face a dilemma when they arrive to find only one open spot left. David Strathairn, who worked with Madden in British theater 30 years ago, also makes a brief appearance.

"That’s a strange world to enter into," Madden says. "Richard Gere was completely exemplary. Tamsin knew half the cast anyway. She’s fantastic."

Ultimately, Madden believes these movies connect because their appeal transcends the older demographic, and because they don’t marginalize the elderly.

"It tells a story about a constituency that is used to being dealt with in an overly serious or dismissive way," Madden says. "The sense of loneliness, the sense of mortality, as well as the urge to go on living as powerfully as you can for as long as you can." (x)

maggie smith judi dench the best exotic marigold hotel cannot wait look how gorgeous she is