‘Downton Abbey’ movie will begin filming at ‘the end of this year’

It looks production is finally gearing up for the long-awaited Downton Abbey film.

Rumours surrounding the movie have been going around for over a year now, with a production source announcing in January that “the financing ducks are being lined up very nicely.”

A PR representative for actor Jeremy Swift, who played Spratt in the final three seasons of Downton Abbey, recently revealed: “Jeremy has also been asked to keep the end of this year free as the Downton movie will begin filming.”

Swift has been filming Mary Poppins Returns in London with Emily Blunt, Colin Firth and Meryl Streep, and released his debut album, ‘Everything’s A Joke’, last month.

Downton Abbey creator Julian Fellowes previously explained the reasons behind the delay: “The thing about Downton is we have a lot of running characters and we really do need them for the movie, so you can imagine at the end of the show they all shot off into shows on Broadway, series in LA, things on television… and they somehow have to gradually be coaxed back into the fold.”

The final episode of Downton Abbey aired on Christmas Day in 2015 on ITV.

Buy the complete Season 1-6 box set on Amazon here.

Fellowes has claimed that “most of the cast are up for [the movie].”

Dame Maggie Smith has reportedly signed on to return as Violet Crawley, Dowager Countess of Grantham, and Michelle Dockery, who played Lady Mary, revealed last year that she would “wholeheartedly consider” appearing. Joanne Froggatt (Anna Bates) has said she is “98% per cent sure it will happen”, Penelope Wilton (Isobel Crawley) says “it would be silly not to say yes” and Laura Carmichael (Lady Edith) is also keen to return. Jim Carter, who played Mr Carson, previously let slip that the cast have been asked to keep certain dates clear in their schedule.

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