Actress Lily James Promoted to Series Regular on ‘Downton Abbey’

The acclaimed ITV mini-series Downton Abbey that has become a worldwide sensation since its debut here in the states on PBS in January of 2011 has seen its fair share of stunning storylines recently – SPOILER ALERT! (tread lightly if you have yet to get caught up on the series yet!) – especially the unexpected and extremely sad deaths of Lady Sybil Crawley (Jessica Brown Findlay) as well as fan favorite Matthew Crawley (Dan Stevens).

With their absence comes the announcement that actress Lily James, who had the recurring role of Rose, the rebellious great niece of the Dowager Crawley (Maggie Smith) in the latter part of the mini-series’ current third season, has been promoted to a series regular when ‘Downton Abbey’ returns for its much anticipated fourth season.

As viewers who have seen all of the third season know, Rose was “invited” to stay at Downton Abbey with her relatives once her shrewish mother gave permission for her to do so. As reported by the folks at TV Line, Rose’s “liberal attitude toward sexuality should liven things up at the staid estate”. Or, you can take the word of executive producer Gareth Neame as gospel (so to speak), “We are entering a more modern age, the post-war into the 1920s and all things that came from that…a slightly freer world (where) women (have) more freedom”.

James is a relative newcomer to television, but did appear in eight episodes of ‘Secret Diary of a Call Girl’ and had a role in the box office film ‘Wrath of the Titans’.

Filming of the fourth season of ‘Downton Abbey’ started this month, but there is no official word on when it will air in the U.K. It will air there before coming here to the States on PBS.