- Publish Date
- Wednesday, 24 May 2023, 9:16AM
After six seasons and two movie spin-offs, Downton Abbey seemingly came to an end. But a new report suggests it might be poised to make its grand return.
Daily Mail has reported the hugely popular show centred around the fictional Crawley family is set to make its television come back and has plans to bring back the big stars that were once attached to it including Hugh Bonneville and Michelle Dockery.
The UK news outlet reported the production company that created the award-winning show has started casting for a new season with sources claiming it could be available for fans to watch as early as next year depending on the actors’ schedules.
Speaking to the news outlet, one source said “There is a plan which is in development and there is a lot of excitement about.
“There is casting taking place, and it would be great if all of the big stars can return. People loved Downton. It became a British institution and it has been much missed since it left our screens.
“There is huge excitement around this project. It was a Sunday night favourite and got huge viewing figures. There has been very little to compete with it ever since it ended.”
The show - which portrayed many societal changes that occurred between 1912 and 1928 - won over the hearts of many fans since its debut in September 2010 and ultimately became the most nominated British show in Emmy history.
Created and produced by Julian Fellowes, the show’s final episode that aired on Christmas Day in 2015, saw a massive audience of 7.4 million across the UK and even more around the world.
The show followed on with a film in 2019 that accumulated US$194.7 million (NZ$309.7m) at the box office and a further $92.7 million ($147.4m) when the second film, Downton Abbey: A New Era was released in 2022.
The show became a career kickstarter for the likes of Lily James who played Lady Rose and Jessica Brown Findlay who played Lady Sybil Crawley.
Bonneville, Dockery and 86-year-old Maggie Smith reprised their beloved roles for both films - while the second film saw some new faces, including Hugh Dancy, Laura Haddock, Nathalie Baye and Dominic West.
Despite rumours of a return to television, Downton’s executive producer Gareth Neame has not commented on the matter, nor has ITV - the show’s network.
This article was first published by the NZ Herald and is republished here with permission.
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