Behind the Scenes at Downton Abbey
by Emma Rowley
HarperCollins Publishers, 2013
I know I'm not the only person eagerly awaiting the next season of Downton Abbey. While Behind the Scenes at Downton Abbey was written to usher in Season 4, it is every bit as relevant gearing up for Season 5. This book is a delight for any Downton fan, offering a look at all that goes into bringing this program to life.
It discusses what goes into writing the scripts, the beauty of Highclere Castle (where some of the footage is shot), the other sets and locations, the hair and makeup, the clothing design, the work that goes into choosing and creating the props (including the food!), and what life is like for the actors and actresses when they are working on the show.
I learned so much reading this book. I had never even thought about many of these details that have to happen for the show to be as beautiful and historically realistic as it is. For example, when a letter is opened, someone has actually written several copies of the same letter so that it can be opened again and again for each take! The work that goes into the costumes and hair is truly amazing. So many people work incredibly hard to make Downton come to life. This book is interesting from a historical, an artistic, and a cinematic perspective. If you are a Downton fan, you will definitely want to read this book.