|Created by||Andrew Davies|
|Based on||Shopping, Seduction & Mr Selfridge
by Lindy Woodhead
|Country of origin||United Kingdom|
|No. of series||2|
|No. of episodes||16 (List of episodes)|
|Executive producer(s)||Kate Lewis
|Running time||Episode 1: 63 minutes
Episodes 2–10: 44–46 minutes
|Production company(s)||ITV Studios
|Distributor||ITV Studios Global Entertainment|
|Original channel||ITV, STV, UTV|
|Original run||6 January 2013– present|
Mr Selfridge is a British period television drama series about Harry Gordon Selfridge and his London department store Selfridge & Co, co-produced by ITV Studios and Masterpiece/WGBH for broadcast on ITV and PBS. The series began airing on 6 January 2013 in the United Kingdom (10 episodes), and on 31 March 2013 in the United States (eight episodes, the first and last being double-length). On 21 February 2014, it was announced that Mr. Selfridge had been renewed for a third series, to air in 2015. 
Development and production
It was announced on 24 May 2011 that ITV was in discussions with ITV Studios about developing an adaptation of Lindy Woodhead's biography Shopping, Seduction & Mr Selfridge. Andrew Davies was confirmed to be working on the script. Beginning in London in 1908, during a time period when women were enjoying an ever increasing amount of freedom, it tells the story of Harry Gordon Selfridge, the founder of Selfridges department store and includes members of his family, particularly his wife Rose Selfridge.
A set to the north of London was built to house a replica of the 1909 Selfridge's store interior. The exterior of the store was recreated in The Historic Dockyard Chatham, in Kent. The disused Aldwych tube station was used to film Rose Selfridge travelling on the London Underground and scenes in the first episode featuring Victor Colleano, Agnes Towler and her brother George.
On 8 February 2013, ITV announced Mr Selfridge had been commissioned for a second series of ten episodes, to start on 19 January 2014. Anthony Byrne, who directed three episodes of series one, will return to direct some of the new episodes. On 22 July 2013, PBS also purchased a second series to air in 2014 as part of its Masterpiece Classics. The second series is set in 1914 and portrays the consequence of World War I to the store and staff.
An American casting director was employed to find an actor suitable to play Harry Selfridge. Jeremy Piven's agent informed him of the role. Producer Chrissy Skinns and director Jon Jones met Piven in Los Angeles and were impressed by his understanding of the character. Executive producer Kate Lewis was "thrilled to attract" Frances O'Connor to the role of Rose Selfridge because she had been a long term fan. Former Coronation Street actress Katherine Kelly signed up to play Lady Mae Loxley and will return for Series 2. The casting of the trio was announced in March 2012 alongside Grégory Fitoussi (Henri Leclair), Aisling Loftus (Agnes Towler), Zoe Tapper (Ellen Love) and Trystan Gravelle (Victor Colleano).
Cast and characters
|Piven, JeremyJeremy Piven||Selfridge, HarryHarry Selfridge||2013–|
|O'Connor, FrancesFrances O'Connor||Selfridge, RoseRose Selfridge||2013–|
|Loftus, AislingAisling Loftus||Towler, AgnesAgnes Towler||2013–|
|Tapper, ZoeZoe Tapper||Love, EllenEllen Love||2013|
|Goodman-Hill, TomTom Goodman-Hill||Grove, RogerRoger Grove||2013–|
|Abbington, AmandaAmanda Abbington||Mardle, JosieJosie Mardle||2013–|
|Markham, KikaKika Markham||Selfridge, LoisLois Selfridge||2013–|
|Kelly, KatherineKatherine Kelly||Loxley, Lady MaeLady Mae Loxley||2013–|
|Cook, RonRon Cook||Crabb, MrMr Crabb||2013–|
|Fitoussi, GrégoryGrégory Fitoussi||Leclair, HenriHenri Leclair||2013–|
|Gravelle, TrystanTrystan Gravelle||Colleano, VictorVictor Colleano||2013–|
|West, SamuelSamuel West||Edwards, FrankFrank Edwards||2013–|
|Hayes, Amy BethAmy Beth Hayes||Hawkins, KittyKitty Hawkins||2013–|
|Crace, LaurenLauren Crace||Miller/Grove, DorisDoris Miller/Grove||2013–|
|Cornelius, DeborahDeborah Cornelius||Blenkinsop, MissMiss Blenkinsop||2013–|
|Watson, TimothyTimothy Watson||Perez, MrMr Perez||2013–|
|Haywood, PippaPippa Haywood||Bunting, MissMiss Bunting||2013|
|Madeley, AnnaAnna Madeley||Ravillious, MissMiss Ravillious||2013–|
|Callaghan, CalumCalum Callaghan||Towler, GeorgeGeorge Towler||2013–|
|Moran, NickNick Moran||Towler, RegReg Towler||2013–|
|Jackson-Cohen, OliverOliver Jackson-Cohen||Temple, Roderick (Roddy)Roderick (Roddy) Temple||2013–|
|Wilson, AdamAdam Wilson||Selfridge, GordonGordon Selfridge||2013|
|Austin, GregGreg Austin||Selfridge, GordonGordon Selfridge||2014—|
|Lee Friar, PoppyPoppy Lee Friar||Selfridge, RosalieRosalie Selfridge||2013–|
|Cassidy, RaffeyRaffey Cassidy||Selfridge, BeatriceBeatrice Selfridge||2013–|
|Wilson, FreyaFreya Wilson||Selfridge, VioletteViolette Selfridge||2013–|
|Payne, WillWill Payne||Travers, TonyTony Travers||2013–|
|Rennie, MalcolmMalcolm Rennie||, FraserFraser||2013–|
|McArdle, AidanAidan McArdle||, Lord LoxleyLord Loxley||2014–|
|MacAninch, CalCal MacAninch||, Mr ThackerayMr Thackeray||2014–|
|Walker, PollyPolly Walker||, Delphine DayDelphine Day||2014–|
|Shimmin, SadieSadie Shimmin||, Miss PlunkettMiss Plunkett||2014–|
|Teale, SeanSean Teale||Colleano, FrancoFranco Colleano||2014–|
|Farnworth, OliverOliver Farnworth||, FlorianFlorian||2014–|
|Series||Episodes||Originally aired||Average rating
|Series premiere||Series finale|
|1||10||January 6, 2013||March 10, 2013||7.99|
|2||10||January 19, 2014||March 23, 2014||TBA|
Series 1 (2013)
|Title||Directed by||Written by||Original air date||Viewers (in millions)
UK viewers by BARB; figures include ITV HD and ITV +1 broadcasts
|1||"Episode 1"||Jon Jones||Andrew Davies||6 January 2013||9.36 [nb 1]|
|Flamboyant Harry Selfridge, after transforming Chicago's Marshall Field's into a modern department store, realises London needs a similar one. He decides to build the biggest and finest department store in the world at the "dead end" of Oxford Street, but his business partner pulls out of the project. Via a pressman he receives help from socialite Lady Mae Loxley and her contacts, one of whom invests. With his wife, four children and his mother arriving in London, Selfridge begins to assemble his staff as the building is completed in record time. Months after inadvertently getting Agnes Towler fired from Gamage's for "conduct unbecoming" (she let him behind the counter while he was looking to purchase a pair of gloves), he hires her for Selfridge's.|
|2||"Episode 2"||Jon Jones||Andrew Davies||13 January 2013||8.95 [nb 2]|
|An initial lack of customers forces Harry Selfridge to think of ways of attracting people to his new London department store. He persuades the first man to fly across the English Channel, French aviator Louis Blériot, to make a personal appearance along with the aircraft in which he made his historic flight. Meanwhile, Harry's infatuation with music-hall artiste Ellen Love results in their being caught in a compromising situation. His marriage comes under threat when Rose agrees to pose for young bohemian artist Roddy Temple. Agnes gets her brother George a job as a porter and abusive father Reg foists himself on them. Victor Colleano is propositioned by a well-to-do customer in the store's restaurant.|
|3||"Episode 3"||John Strickland||Kate Brooke||20 January 2013||7.60 [nb 3]|
|Harry installs Ellen Love in an apartment. Watching her apply make-up, he decides to open a new cosmetics department at the front of the store, not hidden away, and tasks Henri Leclair to create a house perfume. Agnes – sporting a black eye from her violent father – is asked to assist in creating a perfume for ordinary women. Lady Mae helps Rosalie, Harry's eldest daughter, enter society and applies pressure on Harry over his personal affairs. Rose Selfridge learns of the apartment from Lady Mae.|
|4||"Episode 4"||John Strickland||Kate O'Riordan||27 January 2013||7.73 [nb 4]|
|Miss Bunting is sacked for theft and Miss Ravillious is appointed the new head of fashion, ruffling a few feathers. Selfridge takes his wife and eldest daughter to see iconic dancer Anna Pavlova; she is invited to visit his store for a publicity event, and to take tea with his wife. Ellen Love, feeling neglected, arrives during the event and tries to share the limelight with Pavlova but is made to leave. Agnes' drunken father makes a scene at the event. Roddy and his bohemian friends delay Rose Selfridge with the result that she misses the tea altogether.|
|5||"Episode 5"||Anthony Byrne||Kate Brooke||3 February 2013||7.76 [nb 5]|
|Agnes has resigned following her father's drunken antics at the store. Selfridge goes to her home to mend matters; she is reinstated and he confronts her father. Selfridge becomes disturbed by memories of his own abusive father. Ellen Love, becoming irrational, visits Rose to reveal the affair. Selfridge discovers the painting of his wife and wonders about her relationship with the artist, Roddy. Theft in the loading bay where George works is discovered. Henri Leclair is pleased Agnes has returned; she falls out with Victor, who is beginning to ingratiate himself with Lady Mae. Selfridge and his wife finally confront one another; he flees to his club and a showdown with Ellen Love. Overwhelmed with sorrow, Selfridge crashes his car while drunk.|
|6||"Episode 6"||Anthony Byrne||Kate Brooke||10 February 2013||7.79 [nb 6]|
|Selfridge is in a coma from the car crash. Ellen Love is recovering from a botched suicide attempt by drug overdose. Mr Grove – recently bereaved – returns from leave to take charge and his first decision is to ban Lady Mae's suffragettes from meeting in the store. Lady Mae has begun an affair with Victor and he is cold to Agnes; Henri Leclair would like to become her suitor. Selfridge's young son Gordon goes alone to the store, learning he alone will inherit it someday. Ellen thinks about selling her story to the press but is forestalled by an offer from Frank Edwards. The staff must appease the angry suffragettes.|
|7||"Episode 7"||Anthony Byrne||Kate O'Riordan||17 February 2013||7.88 [nb 7]|
|Selfridge welcomes author and spiritualist Sir Arthur Conan Doyle (John Sessions) to a Sherlock Holmes book signing and Selfridge agrees to his request to hold a séance in the store. The séance raises the hopes of Miss Mardle but upsets Lois Selfridge. Doris takes pity on Miss Bunting whose sacking has landed her in poverty. Kitty has a secret admirer – but not the one she hoped for. Agnes transfers from accessories to women's fashion. Lady Mae helps Selfridge win over the bankers in order to make a share issue; she also chaperones Rosalie Selfridge into high society.|
|8||"Episode 8"||Michael Keillor||Kate Brooke||24 February 2013||7.71 [nb 8]|
|Selfridge's old family friend Frank Winfield Woolworth (Michael Brandon) and his wife arrive in London to open a "pile 'em high, sell 'em cheap" store in competition and Selfridge decides to counter with a mid-season sale in every department. Lady Mae proposes suitors for Rosalie and the Selfridges attend one of her soirées at which Roddy is also a guest. Kitty and Doris are rivals for the position of senior assistant subject to interview by Mr Grove. Selfridge refuses to write a reference for Miss Bunting. Agnes has supper with Henri Leclair. Victor's dream of his own restaurant diminishes with Lady Mae's lack of interest. Roddy's attention is proving a nuisance to Rose Selfridge.|
|9||"Episode 9"||Michael Keillor||Kate O'Riordan||3 March 2013||7.40 [nb 9]|
|Selfridge invites Antarctic explorer Ernest Shackleton (Mark Dexter) to give a lecture in the store. The staff are late arriving for work due to a body on the Underground track and Selfridge is shocked to discover he might be responsible. Frank Edwards loses his job and seeks employment from Selfridge, but is denied it. Roddy Temple's attention to Rosalie results in Harry confronting him. Miss Ravillious discovers the affair between Agnes and Leclair just as his old flame, Valerie Maurel (Joséphine de La Baume), returns with a job offer from New York. Doris Miller takes tea with Mr Grove to remember Miss Bunting.|
|10||"Episode 10"||Michael Keillor||Andrew Davies||10 March 2013||7.73 [nb 10]|
|King Edward VII (David Calder) is invited to attend an after hours shopping spree arranged by Lady Mae. In return the King invites the Selfridges to the opening of Ellen Love's new play, to Rose's dismay. Doris Miller is engaged and Miss Mardle is shocked to discover the identity of her fiancé. Henri Leclair tenders his resignation. George Towler invites Kitty Hawkins to the cinema and Agnes Towler renews her friendship with Victor Colleano. The Selfridges and Lady Mae find that the play is a satire with additions to the script by Frank Edwards, bitterly ridiculing them all. Ashamed, Rose Selfridge takes the children back to America. Harry Selfridge is now the King of Oxford Street but estranged from his wife and children.|
Series 2 (2014)
|Title||Directed by||Written by||Original air date||Viewers (in millions)
UK viewers by BARB; figures include ITV HD and ITV +1 broadcasts
|1||"Episode 1"||Anthony Byrne||Andrew Davies and Kate Brooke||19 January 2014||6.76[nb 11]|
|In 1914 the store is celebrating five years, Harry and wife Rose have become increasingly estranged,and he is thrilled when she returns to celebrate the fifth anniversary. There's still a rift between them exacerbated by the influence of novelist Delphine Day and their 15 year old son, Gordon, who wants to leave school and work in the store. Agnes Towler returns from Paris as head of departmental displays. Lady Mae's husband unexpectedly arrives in London and she hears him blackmail his way onto a government military committee amid rumours of impending war.|
|2||"Episode 2"||Anthony Byrne||Kate O'Riordan||26 January 2014||5.73[nb 12]|
|The staff are worried Selfridge will return to America if war breaks out and to reassure them he organizes an Empire Exhibition in the Palm Court restaurant and a staff party. Trade unionists stir up the warehouse workers to demand more rights and Selfridge's son joins the meeting. The staff party is held, to Selfridge's apprehension, at Delphine's club at his wife's request, hoping it will reconcile them. Lord Loxley thwarts Lady Mae's plans to escape to their country house without him by renting it out and then invites himself to the party to meet Selfridge and Delphine lets it slip that Rose has met Henri Leclair.|
|3||"Episode 3"||Rob Evans||Kate Brooke||2 February 2014||5.43[nb 13]|
|Agnes struggles to get the empire exhibition ready, undermined by Mr Thackery and the rival departments needs, and Selfridge offers Henri Leclair, to her delight and Victor Colleano's displeasure, a job to assist her. Lord Loxley pays Selfridge a visit to tell him he can get Winston Churchill to open the event in return for information on leather suppliers, while Lady Mae discovers her husband is bankrupt, information she conceals from Selfridge. Mr Grove handed his final warning when late for work again pulls himself together and discovers 80% of the male staff are eligible for the army. Rose finds her son's, Gordon, collection of racy photos and they have a heart to heart over the relationship of his parents. War is declared between Britain and Germany.|
|4||"Episode 4"||Rob Evans||Dan Sefton||9 February 2014||5.57[nb 14]|
|News of the first horrors of war in Belgium, threaten a staff shortage as the men of Selfridges enlist headed by Agnes Towler's brother, George. Selfridge appoints Henri Leclair as his deputy to the displeasure of Thackery. Rose, Delphine and Lady Mae organise a chocolate sale to aid refugees. Miss Mardle is impressed by Belgium chocolatier Jean Neuhaus (Anthony Howell). Victor, about to enlist, faces a family crisis when his uncle has a heart attack. Loxley gets his shady money-making plans off the ground. Frank Edwards, with little sympathy from Selfridge, finds his war reports are censored by the government.|
|5||"Episode 5"||Lawrence Till||Kate O'Riordan||16 February 2014||5.17|
|The women now working in the loading bay are struggling to do the job in the clothing provided until Rose Selfridge steps in with some suggestions to make the clothing women friendly. Selfridge wants to do more for the war effort so Delphine arranges a card game with several senior government figures who could help and he suggests to Lady Mae that Lord Loxley attend which he is pleased to do believing he can beat Selfridge. Crabb organises rifle training for the staff and Rose Selfridge includes the women. Thackeray's anxieties about Henri Leclair's secretive behaviour reach a new level when he follows him. Miss Mardle receives a Belgium refugee as house guest, a violinist.|
|6||"Episode 6"||Lawrence Till||Kate Brooke||23 February 2014||5.19|
|German goods are removed from the shelves and the British government see an opportunity for Selfridge to go secretly to Berlin to gender information. Selfridge organises a charity concert to foster patriotic sentiment and Lady Mae helps out by arranging for her old friend, music hall singer Richard Chapman (Alfie Boe) to perform at the event and Miss Mardle offers the services of her lodger as an accompanist. Agnes and Victor are going out together and he makes a proposal. Thackeray believes Leclair is a German spy and his response is a surprise. As the concert starts Selfridge is spirited away by the government.|
|7||"Episode 7"||Lawrence Till||Dan Sefton||2 March 2014|
|In the absence of Selfridge the store is run by Grove and Crabb who have to deal with Leclair's arrest as a spy with the help of Agnes and Victor. With the death of a worker from the loading bay on the front line Gordon Selfridge takes on the task of writing a condolence letter. Selfridge, in his absence, is accused by Lord Loxley of providing substandard army equipment to the British Troops and ensures Frank Edwards publishes the scandal together with the knowledge that Selfridge is in Germany. Lady Mae leaves Loxley. Agnes receives a telegram.|
|8||"Episode 8"||Rob Evans||Kate Brooke||9 March 2014|
|Harry deals with a raft of problems on his return from his secret government assignment - not least the news of Henri's arrest. Coming to his employee's aid, Mr Selfridge pulls a few strings and calls in a favour to get him out of custody. Meanwhile, the beleaguered staff receive a much-needed morale boost when Delphine arrives at the store accompanied by Hollywood producers and actresses, and Lady Mae decides it's high time she cut her ties with Loxley.|
|9||"Episode 9"||Rob Evans||Dan Sefton||16 March 2014|
|Having endured a scandal in the press and dealt with Henri's arrest, Harry is determined to get the store back on track and asks Delphine to organise a special event, but takes a risk by inviting notorious American journalist Winifred Bonfils Black. Meanwhile, as Miss Mardle experiences true happiness, Agnes doubts she has made the right choice, and Lady Mae and Frank unite to help Mr Selfridge, but could there be more trouble on the horizon?|
|10||"Episode 10"||23 March 2014|
Comparisons with reality
Many elements of Mr. Selfridge reflect reality, such as Harry Selfridge's flamboyant, loud, and charismatic character. It is also true that Rose Selfridge, Harry's wife, felt unhappy in England. While Harry's family have the same names as in reality (except Harry's son, Harry Gordon Selfridge, Jr., whose name was changed to just Gordon Selfridge in the series), all of the other characters are fictional, but are representative of real figures of the period. The interior and exterior of the store are very similar to the real ones, as is the Selfridge family's house. There are some very significant differences though. Harry's family (aside from Rose and Gordon) live in America in the second series, whereas they lived with Harry in England all the time in reality. Also, Rose and the family leaving after falling out with Harry did not actually happen, although Harry's reputation as a womanizer could be true. Harry's infamous car crash in series 1 did not actually happen, although the entire family did crash near Ambleside in the Lake District in 1911, which was not depicted in the series. Furthermore, Harry's relationship with Highcliffe Castle (not to be confused with Highclere Castle, the setting of another of ITV's period dramas, Downton Abbey) was not shown. The Selfridge family hired the castle and it became a second home for them. Harry and Rose were later buried in the village of Highcliffe. Harry was not sent away to Germany as a spy in the First World War.
In a poll hosted by MSN more than 80% of readers said they would continue watching the show following the first episode. Phil Hogan writing for The Guardian bemoaned the story development. He observed that there is "so much crisis with so little drama". The Daily Mail's Ian Hyland was impressed with the series and praised the performances of Piven, Tapper and Loftus. Ross Sweeney from Cultbox said that the show had direction but lacked "actual substance and any real surprises". He praised the costume designers for their "astonishing attention to detail". Susanna Lazarus of the Radio Times opined that the character's earnestness detracted from the realism of the story. She added the female cast created the "plot tension" needed to maintain viewership. Gabriel Tate of Time Out branded it an unsubtle, daft series with glorious production values but felt it was "ideal escapism for a Sunday night". He also stated that the character of Agnes Towler was "the heart of the show". Benjamin Secher from The Daily Telegraph said that Mr Selfridge is a "less cosy, more charismatic" production of The Paradise. A "sumptuous, frothy drama" and "entertaining spectacle", but ultimately Secher did not believe the story. MSN critic Dan Owen branded it "sumptuous Sunday evening viewing". He thought the "wonderful" sets and costumes were better than those featured in fellow period drama Downton Abbey.
The programme has been distributed internationally by ITV Studios' Global Entertainment brand. ITV sold the series to a number countries at the 2012 Mipcom event. In addition they have pre-sold the show to Australia's Seven Network and the satellite television provider, yes, in Israel. In the Netherlands, airing of the show was planned for August.
|Finland||YLE||4 February 2014–|||
|Latin America||Sundance Channel||2013–|||
|Netherlands||NCRV, Nederland 2||2013–|
|Slovenia||Planet TV||26 February, 2014–|||
- 7.699 million on ITV, 844,000 on the ITV HD simulcast, and 813,000 on ITV +1.
- 7.383 million on ITV, 834,000 on the ITV HD simulcast, and 730,000 on ITV +1.
- 6.19 million on ITV, 786,000 on the ITV HD simulcast, and 626,000 on ITV +1.
- 6.97 million on ITV and ITV HD, and 760,000 on ITV +1.
- 6.27 million on ITV, 747,000 on the ITV HD simulcast, and 744,000 on ITV +1.
- 6.658 million on ITV, 727,000 on the ITV HD simulcast, and 407,000 on ITV +1.
- 6.57 million on ITV, 654,000 on the ITV HD simulcast, and 654,000 on ITV +1.
- 6.26 million on ITV, 712,000 on the ITV HD simulcast, and 742,000 on ITV +1.
- 5.97 million on ITV, 695,000 on the ITV HD simulcast, and 736,000 on ITV +1.
- 6.20 million on ITV, 726,000 on the ITV HD simulcast, and 799,000 on ITV +1.
- 5.43 million on ITV, 777,000 on the ITV HD simulcast, and 553,000 on ITV +1.
- 5.16 million on ITV and 569,000 on ITV +1.
- 4.91 million on ITV and 519,000 on ITV +1.
- 5.06 million on ITV and 506,000 on ITV +1.
- "Masterpiece on PBS and ITV Studios Announce Mr. Selfridge Starring Jeremy Piven" (PDF) (Press release). Boston, MA: WGBH. 25 July 2012. Retrieved 2013-10-09. "MASTERPIECE/WGBH and ITV Studios have announced a coproduction deal that includes Mr. Selfridge (w.t.), a highly anticipated new drama series starring Jeremy Piven (Entourage) in the title role."
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- "Weekly Top 10 Programmes: ITV1+1 w/e 24 February 2013". Broadcasters' Audience Research Board. Retrieved 16 March 2013.
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