Downton Abbey: Could there be a film on the horizon? Creator Julain Fellowes thinks so…..

by Anna Howell

We are starting to wonder what was being served at the National Television Awards as another big winner has revealed plans to turn a popular British TV show into a feature length film!

We reported earlier this week how Brendan O’Carroll, the main star and creator of the hugely popular BBC sitcom Mrs Browns Boys, had revealed, after being awarded Best Situation Comedy at last week’s prestigious ceremony, that plans are underway to turn the Irish, studio audience filmed show into a movie next year.

And now, as the Sun newspaper reports, Julian Fellowes, the genus behind global phenomenon, Downton Abbey, is following suit with plans to take his period drama to the big screen also!

However, before you all go getting excited, Fellowes was very precise about when, and how the Downton film would be made, specifying that it wouldn’t be until the show had run its course on TV, much like the American drama, Sex And The City did.

This isn’t the first time that plans to turn the hit series, which saw the deaths of both Matthew Crawley (Dan Stevens) and Lady Sybil (Jessica Brown-Findlay) during the last series on ITV before Christmas, into a film have been discussed, but now it would seem that Julian Fellowes is very keen to turn the dream a reality!

Speaking to Digital Spy, Julian said: “For me, and I’m not the key decision maker in this department, but for me it would be difficult to tell the story in more than one medium, and I would rather it be like Sex and the City, keep the movie until the end of the series.

“I think that would be quite fun to do, but not simultaneously because then I think the narrative gets all kind of messed up, because then people have to see the movie to understand the next series or whatever, it seems rather unfair to me. So that’s probably what we’ll do.”

On the subject of last series death toll, he continued:

“It’s beginning to be like Midsomer Murders, it’s unsafe to walk down the street!” Julian joked.

“There was no way round that and there we are. It’s difficult with members of the family if they don’t want to come back. Obviously not so much with the servants, because they can get another job and off they go and they’re happy elsewhere. But you can’t have a member of the family never coming back.

“But Dan [Stevens, who played Matthew Crawley] felt he wanted to make the break, he had opportunities in America. And I sympathise with that. I’m not attacking him for that at all. But of course that was sad for us.”

The fourth series of Downton Abbey is due to begin filming within the next few weeks and is said to take the Grantham family in a new direction as Lady Mary (Michelle Dockery) comes to terms with her husband’s death and tries to rebuild her life with her young son and heir.

Watch Julian’s 2011 Emmy acceptance speech for the Outstanding Writing for a Miniseries, Movie or Dramatic Special Award in the clip below: