“Downton Abbey” Writer: Busy

Are you still in recovery from the lack of “Downton Abbey” episodes? (The series’ Maggie Smith singlehandedly got me through the wretched January weather.) If so, you’ll be happy to learn that not only is the series’ creator, Julian Fellowes, putting the finishing touches on the second season (no firm U.S. airdate yet) but he’s also been beavering away at other period projects. One of them — a four-hour TV miniseries about the final hours aboard the Titanic — sounds purely like a “did-it-for-the-money” venture. The other — a projected film script based on Agatha Christie’s “Crooked House” — will probably have more appeal to Downtonites. It’s the story of one Charles Hayward, who is told by his fiancee that she cannot marry him until her grandfather’s killer is brought to justice. Neil LaBute will direct, which is wonderful news because I always wish that LaBute would take on more projects to wrest him away from his comfort zone of male discomfort.

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