Mr. Selfridge (2013 - Masterpiece Classic): Jeremy Piven, Frances O'Connor, Zoe Tapper, Katherine Kelly, Aisling Loftus
Background - Mr. Harry Selfridge....
Fans of Downton Abbey will be riveted on the new television show Mr. Selfridge on PBS, Masterpiece Classic. Based on the true story of Mr. Harry Selfridge, an American businessman, with an extraordinary vision to revolutionize how people shopped in London in the early 1900's. Prior to the opening of Selfridge's department store in the UK, men went to tailors and women sought out seamstresses. It was unfathomable to peruse apparel or try on clothing before purchasing. Selfridge's goal was to change the shopping experience making the act of shopping an event. Additionally, lets just say the idea of bargain shopping was simply not respectable nor the activity so popular as it is today. Selfridge also moved perfumes and make up to the front of the store following the French. The time period, similar to Downton, begins in 1909, with the opening of the infamous store, through 1947. Mr. Harry Selfridge, previously worked at Marshall Fields, Chicago for twenty-five years coining the phrase, "Only _____ Shopping Days Until Christmas". In London, with personal money, Selfridge visualized, persuaded, devised and developed the department store Selfridge. Mr. Selfridge remained in a leadership role for the next thirty years and became one of the most respected and wealthy retail magnets in the United Kingdom. Mr. Harry Selfridge owned Highcliffe Castle in Dorset.
The Show - Mr. Selfridge.....
The show opens with Mr. Selfridge, Jeremy Piven, flamboyantly presenting the vision of the department store to staff and then too investors previewing a development site. A primary investor backs out, but doesn't stop Selfridge to continue on with the dream of building the store. Selfridge builds momentum, finding the perfect sales people, obtaining the best products to sell, while creating excitement with the employees and public through marketing and advertising.
Mr. Harry Selfridge, Jeremy Piven, is an outgoing and over the top visionary with charismatic skills that charms anyone and everyone. Piven is brilliant emulating Selfridge as a PT Barnum or Walt Disney of the time both with ideas and bravado luring shoppers through innovative and unusual tactics. Rose Selfridge, Frances O'Connor, is pale in comparison and does not a share the enthusiasm or joy of the store. Zoe Tapper, Ellen Love, is an aspiring actress with other ideas in mind that include Mr. Selfridge. Tapper oozes sexual charm and Selfridge cannot resist. Lady Mae Boxley, Katherine Kelly, is Violet Crawley, Dowager Countess of Grantham, Maggie Smith, from Downton Abbey, only younger, wickedly smooth, a dreadfully rich investor in the store and of course wonderfully attired. A perfect snake in the grass. Agnes Towers, Aisling Loftus, a struggling young woman, is hired to work at Selfridge and life takes an amazing turn.
Mr. Selfridge, is beautifully filmed in London, showcasing fashion with great story lines and plenty of drama keeping the audience pining for more as the story unfolds. Do not miss this new and up and coming television show Mr. Selfridge - Sunday night's at 9:00 p.m. PBS - Masterpiece Classic - March. Will not disappoint. Piven has found another Entourage. A wonderful mix of intrigue, drama with excellent script and actors. Downton Abbey does indeed have a British rival - Mr. Selfridge!