Good News for ‘Downton Abbey’ Fans: Maggie Smith is Returning

A lot of press has been made lately of the disappointing departure of Downton Abbey fan favorite Dan Stevens from the upcoming fourth season; but a bit of good news has come down the pike for those fans all over the world who have become captivated by this gem of a mini-series.

What is that news? Well, as the title clearly states – Maggie Smith is returning to the series as the whip-smart Dowager Countess Violet Crawley for the next new season.

According to the folks at TV Line, executive producer Gareth Neame confirmed at a post-Golden Globes party that the renowned actress would, indeed, be back for season four.

For those few of you who have not jumped on the bandwagon that is ‘Downton Abbey’ – perhaps the most successful mini-series from ITV to make strong waves here in the States thanks to its airings on PBS – is (simply put) a period drama chronicling the lives of the aristocratic Crawley family and their league of servants who call the prestigious English manor house Downton Abbey home.

The third season of ‘Downton Abbey’ has already completely aired in the U.K. – with a few shocking events taking place (which will not be divulged here) – but has just begun its airing here in the States with the third installment of the eight-parts getting set to air this weekend. There will also be (like last season) a special Christmas episode that will also air at the conclusion of season three.

The next episode of ‘Downton Abbey’ will air on PBS this Sunday, January 20 at 9/8c.