‘Downton Abbey’ Movie Sequel to Feature ‘Poignant’ Death of Beloved Character

Maggie Smith as the Dowager Countess in Downton Abbey
Carnival Films for Masterpiece/PBS / Courtesy: Everett Collection

Downton Abbey fans might need their tissues at the ready following reports that a beloved character will be killed off in the upcoming film.

According to The Sun, Downton Abbey: A New Era will “leave fans in floods.” A source told the publication that Downton creator Julian Fellowes “has made this death so poignant,” adding, “Those who have seen the scenes said they are so emotional. It’s heartbreak at Highclere Castle and there won’t be a dry eye in cinemas.”

While there is no word yet on which character is about to meet their maker, fans are already fearing the worst. The most popular pick at the moment is the aging Dowager Countess, played by Dame Maggie Smith, and that thought is not going down well.

“It had better not be the Dowager!!” tweeted one fearful fan. “I’ll never be ready for that,” wrote another.

Other prominent cast members returning for the movie and could be potential victims include Hugh Bonneville (as Robert Crawley), Michelle Dockery (as Lady Mary Talbot), Elizabeth McGovern (as Cora Crawley), and Laura Charmichael (as Edith Pelham).

Joining the cast are Hugh Dancy, Laura Haddock, Nathalie Bay, and Dominic West, although there are currently no details known about their characters.

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The hit drama's movie sequel is set to arrive in theaters this December.

My Week with Marilyn‘s Simon Curtis is set to direct the upcoming film, with Fellowes once again writing the screenplay. It is scheduled for release on March 18, 2022.

Downton Abbey: A New Era, Movie Premiere, March 18, 2022, Theaters