In the slew of announcements made by NBC Chairman Bob Greenblatt, he gave an update on Julian Fellowes’ long-gestating NBC period drama The Gilded Age, and the news might not be encouraging for Downton Abbey fans.
NBC tapped the Downton creator to create and executive produce The Gilded Age — a sweeping fictional epic of the millionaire titans of New York City in the 1880s — more than two years ago. But with Downton being a big global hit that (the ITV series is produced by NBCUniversal-owned Carnival Films) and Fellowes writing every episode of the intricate period drama, Gilded Age was put on the back burner, with NBC and Universal TV executive giving the Oscar and Emmy winner carte blanche to come work on the NBC series when he is ready/done with Downton.
“I think he’s at a point now where he’s able to start developing and writing our new show,” Greenblatt said. “Hopefully this show will be coming to life sometime in the next season.”
There had been a lot of speculation that Downton, already picked up for a sixth season, would end its run after Season 6 or Season 7. Fellowes had declined to commit to an exact end date but has indicated that the show will not go on for a lot longer.
Because of his passion for Downton, it is hard to imagine that Fellowes would abandon a show that he had poured his heart and soul into since Day 1 as it is heading into its final chapter. Will Season 6 indeed be the end?