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A lot of actors find it impossible not to ask for the audience’s sympathy. They have a need to twinkle.

Julian Fellowes

Although ‘L.A. Confidential’ is a long movie, there’s never a moment when you think, ‘I’m loving this… but when’s dinner?’ Each time I see it, I discover something I hadn’t noticed before. It has a tremendous skill in developing all the subplots.

Julian Fellowes

For most directors, the scriptwriter is about as welcome on set as a member of the Taliban.

Julian Fellowes

I always like to arrive at the airport early to enjoy breakfast and lounge about so that when I get on the plane all my travel fever has disappeared.

Julian Fellowes

I always loved movies and the cinema; we always used to go to see films as a family.

Julian Fellowes

I come from a class which used to be called the gentry – which is nowadays mistakenly used to include the nobility, but in fact is not. The gentry was essentially the untitled landowning class.

Julian Fellowes

I don’t seem to have ever had a plan, but I have always been quite good at walking through doors when they are opened. I am never any good at anticipating what will happen next, but I always go for it when it does.

Julian Fellowes

I don’t think I’m an unkind person, I don’t think my books are unkind, and I don’t think my readers are unkind.

Julian Fellowes

I envy people who can think, ‘No, I’m not going to work today’ when they have a huge pile of deadlines stacking up.

Julian Fellowes

I have derived enormous confidence from being a husband and father.

Julian Fellowes

I have fits of melancholia when I watch the news, but we all do, don’t we?

Julian Fellowes

I just don’t believe in generalisations.

Julian Fellowes

I like people who don’t accept boundaries. Like Florence Nightingale. And Napoleon or Louis XIV, though I’m not sure how much I’d have liked to meet them. I admire people who aren’t circumscribed by circumstance.

Julian Fellowes

I like to take a long time over breakfast, and I can’t bear to talk. If a guest is a breakfast talker it’s very important to invite another so they can talk to each other. Otherwise they spoil the newspaper reading and everything else.

Julian Fellowes

I love ‘Sex and the City;’ I think I’ve seen every episode.

Julian Fellowes

I mean the truth is, I’ve always been interested in the whole setup of the Old World.

Julian Fellowes

I think America has dealt with – I mean, this is simplistic, and of course I don’t live in America – but the impression I get is that there is not a kind of obligation to dislike those who are better off or be frightened of those who are worse off.

Julian Fellowes

I think American television changed world television in its reinvention of the series.

Julian Fellowes

I think Americans are wonderful film actors – the best in the world – but they are a very contemporary race and they look forward all the time.

Julian Fellowes

I think every period – except for the 14th century, or something – has some merits.

Julian Fellowes

I think I have a very detailed sense of observation. I am interested in the details of people’s lives and what information these details give.

Julian Fellowes

I think the reason why people love ‘Downton Abbey’ is because all the characters are given the same weight. Some are nice, some are not, but it has nothing to do with class or oppressors versus the oppressed.

Julian Fellowes

I’m seen as a chronicler of the class system, which I don’t think is unfair.

Julian Fellowes

If you are lucky, you have your moment. But it is never more than a moment. You have to enjoy it while it lasts.

Julian Fellowes

If you’re supposed to be a ‘personality,’ then you might as well have a personality.

Julian Fellowes

In the end, drama is successful if you care about the people.

Julian Fellowes

Most of the soap operas always use the Christmas special to kill huge quantities of their characters. So they have trams coming off their rails, or cars slamming into each other or burning buildings. It’s a general clean-out.

Julian Fellowes

Most of us don’t want to be outsiders.

Julian Fellowes

My childhood was a happy one, spent in a tall house in South Kensington and later in East Sussex, but my early and mid teens were less successful.

Julian Fellowes

My mother converted to Catholicism to marry my father.

Julian Fellowes

My own belief is that most people are trying to do their best. It doesn’t mean they have no nasty side, or that they don’t have a bad temper, or that they have never done anything they feel ashamed of. But fiction operates on people waking up trying to be horrible, and I don’t think most people are trying to be horrible.

Julian Fellowes

My parents came from different backgrounds. My father’s was grander than my mother’s, so my mother had… to put up with the disapproval of my father’s relations.

Julian Fellowes

Ninety-eight per cent of actors who actually make a living do so in front of a camera.

Julian Fellowes

Nothing is harder to dramatize than happiness.

Julian Fellowes

Of course I love winning things; I can’t tell you how much I enjoy it.

Julian Fellowes

One of the things that you’re not really in control of – apart from everything – is your smell.

Julian Fellowes

People tend to view history as if it were another planet and think the modern world was invented in 1963. I don’t agree.

Julian Fellowes

Plenty of friendships are sustainable through dinners and lunches, but will not stand a week away. So be careful with whom you go on holiday.

Julian Fellowes

Sometimes the weekend gets hijacked by work, but as my mother would say, this is the right problem.

Julian Fellowes

Sometimes you watch one of your favorite shows from 20 years ago and you think, ‘I’m loving this, but golly, it’s going at the speed of a snail.’

Julian Fellowes

Success means your thoughts are worthy of everyone’s consideration.

Julian Fellowes

The ’20s are a very interesting period to me.

Julian Fellowes

The business of life is learning that you can’t lay down the terms.

Julian Fellowes

The English country house is certainly an icon of British culture.

Julian Fellowes

The great houses of Britain have, for centuries, been the guardians of much of our history, not just of the families who built and lived in them, but of the people who worked there, of the local area, of all of us.

Julian Fellowes

The moment I was introduced to my wife, Emma, at a party I thought, here she is – and 20 minutes later I told her she ought to marry me. She thought I was as mad as a rat. She wouldn’t even give me her telephone number – and she wrote in her diary: ‘A funny little man asked me to marry him.’

Julian Fellowes

There are some men who are frightened by strong women and some men who are nurtured by them and feel nervous, with weak clinging vines. And I am very much of the latter category.

Julian Fellowes

There is almost nothing in your house that does not tell something about you.

Julian Fellowes

There isn’t much point in the whole ‘celebrity’ nonsense unless one is prepared to go out on a limb and, one hopes, speak up for some under-represented section of the community.

Julian Fellowes

To be honest, when you’re running a series and you have an open end, you don’t want to limit yourself too much with the choices you’ve got for a particular character.

Julian Fellowes

To me, all success is a delightful surprise, since one can absolutely never predict it.

Julian Fellowes

We don’t really like rules. We think, in some way, they are an infringement of liberty.

Julian Fellowes

We live a life that is often spent in crowds – parties, festivals and first nights – so it’s nice to avoid them.

Julian Fellowes

Well, you’ve got to be known for something. The danger of extreme versatility is that you don’t spring to mind for anything.

Julian Fellowes

What I dislike about movie culture is that it often presents a parable of our problems – but the issues are all straightforward and the people are either nice or they’re not. In real life, everyone falls between those perimeters, but not many American films operate in that grey area.

Julian Fellowes

What the Americans want to see is life in their drama. Life of all sorts: hard lives, easy lives, or lives which, like most of ours, are a mixture of the two.

Julian Fellowes

What you have to understand about period drama is that it’s ‘history light.’

Julian Fellowes

When people are feeling insecure about their jobs and there are cuts to be made, it’s hard to put up an argument that the film industry needs funding.

Julian Fellowes

When you are desperate to get someone who isn’t all that interested in you, you lay siege as hard as you can.

Julian Fellowes

When you make your first film, there is a hell of a lot to think about, and you’ve got to have a gut understanding of your material.

Julian Fellowes

You do get fond of your characters. Handing them on is like giving a child to a nanny.

Julian Fellowes

You know, I’m not a revolutionary.

Julian Fellowes

You see, in America, it’s quite standard for an actor to sign, at the beginning of a series, for five or seven years. The maximum any British agent will allow you to have over an actor is three years.

Julian Fellowes

Jeremy Hunt
Ferdinand Foch
Carl Philipp Emanuel Bach
Hugh Miller