LOS ANGELES (AP) — As PBS’ “Masterpiece” marks its 50th anniversary Sunday, the drama and mystery showcase could rest on…. If “Masterpiece” had seemed to some like an antique, the “Downton” phenomenon quickly shut them down. Series that seem as though they absolutely belong on “Masterpiece” — I’m thinking of “War & Peace” in 2016, which was on A&E, Lifetime, and History, or “Parade’s End” of 2013 and “Gentleman Jack” of 2019, both of which were on HBO. Beecham House, PBS at 10 on Sunday: Former East India Company solider John Beecham arrives in Delhi determined to reunite his family and hide the identity of … That includes taking an active role in fostering diversity in projects as they’re being developed, she said, and discovering authentic ways to reflect inclusivity in period dramas, among them 2019’s “Les Miserables” miniseries. “HBO pounced on doing ‘Elizabeth I’ with Helen Mirren, which was a very rude shock because we considered rather comfortably that we owned Elizabeth I,” she said. PBS’ Masterpiece, which has been home to classic British dramas including Downton Abbey, Upstairs, Downstairs, Prime Suspect and the original House of Cards, turns 50 on January 10. It’s hard to imagine “Bridgerton,” or “The Crown,” two current period hits on Netflix, without “Masterpiece” as a precedent, just as it’s hard to name many news magazines that weren’t somehow shaped by “60 Minutes.”. Like most anthology series, the “Masterpiece” output is uneven. “The thrust of diversity meant several things,” Callender said, including making the female characters fully dimensional, casting actors with physical challenges and creating a character inspired by the family history of Black actor Clea Sylvestre, who plays the role. Pandemic uncertainty brought it to “Masterpiece,” when taping on some of its U.K. shows paused last March and Simpson sought available programs as a safeguard. You've just tried to add this show to My List. But first, we need you to sign in to PBS using one of the services below. PBS has had a long-standing relationship with Amazon for distribution of Masterpiece titles, The Collection is the first Masterpiece co-production with Amazon Studios and Lookout Point. This material may not be published, broadcast, written or redistributed. While PBS may be viewed primarily as a traditional broadcaster, its programs (and educational initiatives) are available online. “Masterpiece” had aired “Elizabeth R,” the 1972 miniseries with Glenda Jackson as the monarch, a perceived stake that HBO blithely ignored. On Jan. 10, 1971, the anthology series premiered with “The First Churchills,” a 12-episode drama about Winston Churchill’s 17th-century ancestors. The show’s reputation is as a definitively old-school TV establishment, the one at the opposite end of the spectrum from “pop culture,” the rare series that anti-television types are willing to admit to watching. Naturally, massive hits don’t come the way of “Masterpiece” often, but they do arrive; in between, there are shows — both adaptations and, like “Downton,” originals — that range from masterful (“Bleak House”) and transporting (“Victoria”) to riveting (the recent “Elizabeth Is Missing” starring Glenda Jackson) and sunnily escapist (“The Durrells in Corfu” and the new “All Creatures Great and Small” premiering Sunday). But “Masterpiece” executive producer Susanne Simpson says it’s positioned to thrive as it addresses the challenges posed by a changing media industry and increased calls for diversity. And yet, “Downton Abbey.” The Julian Fellowes series, which premiered here in 2011, became the highest-rated “Masterpiece,” and the most-nominated non-US series in Emmy history.

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