The Gilded Age: Everything we know about the new must-watch period drama

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Photo credit: HBO
Photo credit: HBO

HBO's The Gilded Age is the latest sumptuous period drama from Downton Abbey creator Julian Fellowes, which features an impressive ensemble cast.

Set in 1882 in New York, the Gilded Age was an era of rapid economic growth, which created a social divide between those in the upper echelons with inherited wealth, and those from lower classes with new money, also known as the 'nouveau riche'.

The story follows Marian Brook, the orphaned daughter of a Union general, who moves to New York to stay with her aunts, Agnes van Rhijn and Ada Brook – both hailing from the old money world. Marian is accompanied by Peggy Scott, an accomplished African-American woman, and both women find themselves trapped between a modern, progressive age, and the stuffy, established rules of an aristocratic society.

Photo credit: HBO
Photo credit: HBO

HBO released the first official trailer for the series, which will arrive in January. Here's everything else we know about the drama...

The Gilded Age: Release date

HBO has announced that the series will arrive in January. There's no UK release date so far, but we're hoping the drama will be available to watch on Sky Atlantic, and to stream on NOW TV. We'll keep you updated.

The Gilded Age: The plot

The Gilded Age in America was one of prosperity and rapid economic growth, which created a social war between aristocrats with inherited money and trust funds, and those from a 'lower' class background who were earning vast sums of money.

HBO says: 'Against this backdrop of change, the story begins in 1882 — introducing young Marian Brook, the orphaned daughter of a Union general, who moves into the New York City home of her thoroughly old money aunts Agnes van Rhijn and Ada Brook. Accompanied by Peggy Scott, an accomplished African-American woman, Marian inadvertently becomes enmeshed in a social war between one of her aunts, a scion of the old money set, and her stupendously rich neighbours, a ruthless railroad tycoon and his ambitious wife, George and Bertha Russell.'

On the cusp of the modern age, Marian has to decide whether to follow the established rules of society, or break away and forge her own path.

The Gilded Age: The cast

The Gilded Age boasts a stellar ensemble cast, which is led by Louisa Jacobson as Marian Brook, daughter of Meryl Streep. Christine Baranski stars as Agnes van Rhijn, Marian's stubborn aristocratic aunt, while Cynthia Nixon plays sister to Agnes, Ada Brook.

The Leftovers and Sinner star Carrie Coon plays Bertha Russell, neighbour to Agnes and Ada, who has come into vast sums of money thanks to her financial genius husband. Ruthless in business, Morgan Spector plays Bertha's husband, George.

Photo credit: HBO
Photo credit: HBO

Tony nominated Broadway star and actress Denée Benton plays Peggy Scott, a young, ambitious writer who is accompanying Marian to New York. Both women are seeking a fresh start form an unlikely friendship as they begin this next chapter of their lives in New York, but Peggy has a secret that will eventually be revealed causing a tectonic shift in her world.

The cast also includes Jeanne Tripplehorn, Taissa Fermiga and Blake Ritson.

Julian Fellowes is the creator, writer and executive producer on the series, while Gareth Neame will executive produce, who also worked on Downton Abbey the series and film.

The Gilded Age will air in January 2022.


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