In Spotlight: Julian Fellowes’ best movies and TV shows - from Downton Abbey to The Gilded Age

We round up the top films and TV shows written by Julian Fellowes, including award-winning period drama Downton Abbey and the new HBO series, The Gilded Age.

By Sophia Moir Published: 26 January 2022 - 12.35pm
Getty Julian Fellowes

Julian Fellowes is one of our country's most famous screenwriters, with a whole host of TV, film and theatre credits to his name.

Even if you aren't familiar with his name, you will almost certainly have heard of his professional work - most notably, a certain Downton Abbey.

The second Downton Abbey film is on its way, but the 72-year-old writing talent is making headlines at the moment for his new HBO period drama, The Gilded Age.

Here, we round up the top films and TV shows written by Julian Fellowes. 

The Gilded Age

The Gilded Age is a big-budget period drama that focuses on the boom years of 1880s New York, at a time when the United States was experiencing rapid economic growth.

Exposed to a world on the brink of the modern age, the series follows Marian (played by Meryl Streep's daughter, Louisa Jacobson) as she moves in with her aunts in the city and is exposed to the new vs old money divide. 

Watch The Gilded Age weekly on Sky Atlantic with a NOW Entertainment Membership from 25 January.

The Gilded Age: Cast, storyline, filming locations revealed >

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A tale of secrets and scandals set in 1840s London, Belgravia is another juicy period drama with an upper-class family at its core.

When the Trenchards accept an invitation to a ball on the eve of the Battle of Waterloo, it sets in motion a series of events that will have consequences for decades to come.

Watch Belgravia on BritBox.

3 reasons why Downton Abbey fans will love Belgravia >

The English Game

Fellowes turned his hand to football with the 2020 Netflix mini-series The English Game, which explores the origins of the world’s most popular sport. 

Based on true events, this 19th century drama follows two footballers on opposite sides of a class divide who changed the game  - and England - forever. 

Watch The English Game on Netflix.

The English Game: How we made it >

Downton Abbey

A bona-fit hit on both sides of the Atlantic, Downton Abbey chronicled the lives of the British aristocratic Crawley family and their servants in the early twentieth century.

The ITV period drama, which has spawned two spin-off films, won countless accolades over its six-year run including Golden Globe, Emmy, and BAFTA Awards.

Watch Downton Abbey Series 1-6 on Netflix, Prime Video, and BritBox.

The Downton Abbey film is available to watch on Netflix, and its sequel Downton Abbey: A New Era is in cinemas from Friday 18 March.

The Young Victoria

The 2009 feature film focuses on the turbulent first years of Queen Victoria's rule (played by Emily Blunt), and her enduring romance with Prince Albert (Rupert Friend). 

As screenwriter, Fellowes sought to make the script for the film as historically accurate as possible, and it subsequently went on to win an Oscar for its costumes. 

Watch The Young Victoria on Sky Cinema with NOW.

Vanity Fair

In the 2004 film Vanity Fair, Reese Witherspoon gave a career-defining performance as one of the greatest female characters of all time, Becky Sharp. 

The movie is a dazzling ascent up the social ladder as vivacious Becky schemes and seduces her way to the top - until love and romance threaten to get in the way.

Watch Vanity Fair on BritBox.

Gosford Park

Set in 1930’s England, a group of rich and famous gather at an old-fashioned country house for a weekend of relaxation and hunting. But when a murder occurs, each one of these interesting characters becomes a suspect.

Plot sound vaguely familiar? Fellowes initially planned Downton Abbey as a spin-off of Gosford Park.

The period drama film, starring Maggie Smith, Ryan Phillippe and Michael Gambon, earned Fellowes the Academy Award for Best Original Screenplay in 2002.

Watch Gosford Park on Netflix.

Best period dramas on Netflix >