Belfast Telegraph

Friday 19 September 2014

Mr Darcy statue built in Serpentine

A statue of Jane Austen's romantic hero Mr Darcy in The Serpentine in London's Hyde Park

Colin Firth's eye-popping lake scene from Pride And Prejudice has been brought to life once again - with a giant statue positioned in a well-known lake.

The fibreglass sculpture of the actor's head and torso stretches 12ft out of the water at The Serpentine in London's Hyde Park.

It has been built to celebrate the launch of new TV channel Drama after topping a poll last week to find the the most memorable moment in British TV drama.

The scene featured in a 1995 BBC adaptation of the Jane Austen novel, which was published 200 years ago. The image of Firth emerging dripping wet from the lake at Lyme Park in Cheshire caused a stir and turned the actor into a sex symbol.

Hyde Park was a fashionable place to promenade in the early 1800s - and for decades afterwards - with Austen strolling there on a regular basis.

The model of the star took a team of three sculptors in excess of two months to design, construct and paint.

Lead sculptor Toby Crowther said: "The challenge for us was capturing the spirit of Darcy as handsome and noble but also aloof and proud. The Mr Darcy sculpture is a real mix of the many portrayals of Jane Austen's most famous hero."

The sculpture will tour a number of locations before being installed in Lyme Park, where it will remain until February.

Adrian Wills, general manager of Drama, said: "Jane Austen spent a lot of time walking in Hyde Park and along the banks of the Serpentine, so we would like to think she would have approved of our new dashing Darcy."

The new channel, created by UKTV, is a free-to-air station which is on Sky and on Freeview channel 20.

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