Death Comes to Pemberley (TV series)

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For the book, see Death Comes to Pemberley.
Death Comes to Pemberley
Alt=Series tile over an image of the house
First episode titles
Genre Drama
Based on Death Comes to Pemberley novel by P. D. James
Written by Juliette Towhidi
Directed by Daniel Percival
Composer(s) The Insects
Country of origin United Kingdom
Original language(s) English
No. of series 1
No. of episodes 3
Executive producer(s)
  • Ed Rubin
  • Joanie Blaikie
  • P.D. James
  • Justin Thomson-Glover (Far Moor)
  • Patrick Irwin (Far Moor)
  • Rebecca Eaton (Masterpiece)
  • Polly Hill (BBC)
Cinematography Steve Lawes
Running time 60 minutes (each episode)
Production company(s) Origin Pictures, Masterpiece co-production
Original channel BBC One
Original release 26 December 2013 (2013-12-26) – 28 December 2013 (2013-12-28)
External links
BBC site Death Comes to Pemberley

Death Comes to Pemberley is a three-part British television drama based on the best-selling P.D. James novel of the same name, a murder mystery continuation of the events of Jane Austen's Pride and Prejudice incorporating the same characters.

It was commissioned by Controller of BBC Drama Commissioning Ben Stephenson and then-Controller of BBC One Danny Cohen,[1] and was first broadcast from 26–28 December 2013 on BBC One.[2][3]


It is October, 1803, six years after the events in Pride and Prejudice which resulted in the marriage of Mr. Fitzwilliam Darcy and Miss Elizabeth Bennet. One evening, on their way to Pemberley for a ball, an argument breaks out between George Wickham and Captain Denny in the carriage, with Wickham's wife (and Elizabeth's sister), Lydia, also present. The two leave the carriage in anger and disappear into the woodland, where two gunshots are heard. Upon hearing the news, Darcy sends out a search party and Wickham is found distraught and hysterical holding Denny's body, blaming himself for his murder.




The cast was announced on 18 June 2013. The series was cast by Gary Davy. Actor Tom Ward, who plays Colonel Fitzwilliam, is the only cast member to have previously played a role in an adaptation of Pride and Prejudice. He played Lt Chamberlayne in the 1995 BBC adaptation.


Filming began in June 2013 on location in Yorkshire and Derbyshire and has been supported with investment from Screen Yorkshire. Chatsworth House in Derbyshire was used as the exterior of Pemberley, and rooms at Chatsworth and at Castle Howard and Harewood House, both in Yorkshire, were used for indoor scenes.[4] Areas of National Trust land including Hardcastle Crags, Fountains Abbey and the Studley Royal estate and Treasurer's House were also used in filming. Beverley's Guildhall provided the location for a courtroom.[5] The gallows scenes were filmed on a purpose-built scaffold outside York Crown Court, with Wickham emerging from the gate to the old debtors' prison in the York Museum.


The Guardian described the tone of the first episode as respectful of Austen's original, but "not afraid to stand out and be its own very different thing as well", describing it as a "mashup" between period drama and Agatha Christie or Midsomer Murders.[6] A later Guardian review described the series as "pretty much perfect Christmas TV", praising the appearance of the series and the "satisfying plot".[7] Lina Talbot, writing for the Independent, praised the casting of Mr and Mrs Bennet.[8] The Radio Times praised the production values of the piece, and noted that they were supported by a "meaty" plot.[9]


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