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Julian Fellowes optimistic of fourth Downton Abbey series as finale hits season high

Downton Abbey, Season 3

Story by Jack Foley

JULIAN Fellowes has said he is optimistic of getting a fourth season of Downton Abbey given the ongoing success of the show.

The third season ended on Sunday night (November 4) with a season high audience that included a 10.1 million average and a peak of 10.7 million.

It prompted one ITV spokeswoman to Tweet on Monday: “Downton bows out with a series high – peak of 10.7m (av 10.1m).”

ITV has already announced a two-hour Christmas Day special and looks set to bring the period drama back for a fourth run. But they have yet to officially confirm anything.

Fellowes, though, is hopeful and told The Daily Telegraph that he is pleased with the continued enthusiasm of viewers.

“I would hope [there will be more] because of the response to this series, but you know [ITV] are always pretty close to their chest in terms of an actual commission. But I think I’d be surprised if there was not a fourth series.”

In the same interview, he also talked about the progression of the show, insisting that he has been pleased with all three seasons in spite of criticism of the second run.

He described the sophomore episodes, which unfolded against the backdrop of World War I, as “more solid” than the first, while adding of the third: “I thought it worked well… It seems to me that the actors have made a very good job of it and the audience response has been great and they kept watching.”

Fellowes went on to discuss the possibility of introducing one or two ethnic characters in future seasons in a bid to address some further criticisms that the show isn’t diverse enough.

But he did warn: “You have to work it in in a way that is historically believable, but I am sure we could do that. [The show] certainly ought to have an Indian character from that period.”

Read our verdict on the season three finale