Wednesday 18 September 2019

Imelda Staunton rules out Downton Abbey film role

There has been plenty of speculation about the lavish ITV series being turned into a movie.

Imelda Staunton rules out Downton Abbey film role (Dominic Lipinski/PA)
Imelda Staunton rules out Downton Abbey film role (Dominic Lipinski/PA)

By Lucy Mapstone, Press Association Deputy Entertainment Editor

Imelda Staunton has said she would not like a role in the reported Downton Abbey film, despite her husband Jim Carter being one of the period drama’s leading stars.

The Harry Potter actress said she “does not know” if a big-screen version of the hit TV series is being made.

Asked why she would not like to appear in a Downton Abbey film, Staunton said: “Downton is all those people, they don’t want any new characters, you want all the house, the house people.

“I like it when it’s just downstairs and upstairs, and it’s all the family and staff who are there.”

Downton Abbey (ITV)

She added that she thinks she would be a part of the “downstairs” cast if she were to appear.

Carter, who has been married to Staunton for more than 30 years, played butler Mr Carson in Downton Abbey.

Speculation has been rife that the ITV series, which ran from 2010 until 2015, will make its way into cinemas.

Series creator Julian Fellowes previously told the Press Association that filming a movie would begin immediately if it was up to him.

He said he thinks the fact the show created such big stars, including Michelle Dockery and Lily James, will make it harder for the film to come together, because the actors are scattered around the world working on other projects.

Lord Fellowes said: “I’m pro it, I’m not resisting, but logistically I think it’s quite hard because it’s a very big cast and you would want to get all of them, or pretty well all of them, and they are all on Broadway or in Hollywood and so on, and we would have to find this magic window.”

Phyllis Logan, who played housekeeper Mrs Hughes, recently hinted that the film version of Downton Abbey could start shooting this year.

In December, she told the Mail on Sunday the cast have been consulted about when they are available and added: “There’s a potential script coming our way, slightly rewritten.”

She added: “Everyone’s been asked what’s going on between this date and that date.”

Logan said she is “certainly up for it”.

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