Miranda star Tom Ellis has denied rumours that he is to join series four of Downton Abbey as a potential love interest for Michelle Dockery's character, Lady Mary.
After tabloid reports that he had auditioned for a role, Ellis tweeted: "It's been lovely to hear all the congrats for Downton, but the truth is I'm not going to be in it."
Speculation has been rife that a major new romantic male lead will be cast in the hit ITV period drama, following the shock death in the 2012 Christmas special of Matthew Crawley, played by Dan Stevens. After three years on the show, Stevens declined to sign a new contract to appear.
Downton creator Julian Fellowes has revealed that the new series begins six months after the events in the Christmas episode and will thus not feature Matthew's funeral.
Ellis was recently cast as Dr Frankenstein in Gothica, a pilot drama for US network ABC.