A sequel to the successful spin-off film from Julian Fellowes’ Downton Abbey TV series will be released this Christmas.
The as yet untitled film began shooting last week, with all key cast members – including Hugh Bonneville and Maggie Smith – returning alongside new faces including Hugh Dancy, Laura Haddock and Dominic West.
The TV series ended with a season set during the general strike of 1926; the film was set a year and a half later, and featured a royal visit to the Yorkshire estate of Lord and Lady Grantham.
Plot details for the followup film are under wraps. The 2019 film was generally well-received and grossed $194m worldwide.
The plot of that movie included the revelation that Maggie Smith’s character, the dowager countess, did not have long to live. Smith, 86, will be returning for the shoot, under what are believed to be enhanced Covid precautions.
West will shortly be seen playing Prince Charles in the fifth and sixth seasons of The Crown.