Downton Abbey cast reveal season three spoilers in US
Story by Jack Foley
THE cast and creators of Downton Abbey have been letting slip some spoilers about what to expect from the forthcoming third season while on tour in the US.
Speaking at the final opening day session of the Television Critics’ Association summer press tour, and in the wake of the show’s 16 Emmy nominations, cast members Hugh Bonneville and Shirley MacLaine, as well as series creator Julian Fellowes, discussed some of what to expect.
This included the fact that Lord Grantham (played by Bonneville) will be broke, having invested all of his money, including Lady Grantham’s inheritance, into one corrupt basket.
The revelation of the financial disrepair causes Lord Grantham to fear for his marriage to Lady Grantham and tees up the entrance of MacLaine’s mother of Lady Grantham, who immediately clashes with Maggie Smith’s Dowager Countess.
When asked if she was a fan of Downton Abbey prior to joining the cast, MacLaine candidly replied ‘no’, only having learned of the show through her Malibu hairdresser.
But she was quick to pay tribute to Fellowes and the way in which he had successfully managed to produce a period drama with fully developed characters packaged in a fast-moving story that ‘sits with the Internet tolerance for emotional knowledge’.
Brendan Coyle’s Bates will also begin the third season locked away in prison but convinced his innocence will come to light (Bonneville reportedly brandished a ‘Free Bates’ T-shirt for the occasion), and Lady Sybil will bring her husband – the erstwhile chauffeur – to Downton, prompting much gossip and raised eyebrows among staff and resident members.
The third season of Downton Abbey is due to return to TV screens on ITV this coming autumn.