Joanne Froggatt has promised “romance, fun, surprises, sadness and intrigue” in the long-awaited Downton Abbey movie, comparing the film shoot to a “lovely school reunion.”
Period drama Downton Abbey came to an end on ITV at Christmas 2015 after six series, but after years of speculation and planning, creator Julian Fellowes gathered everyone back together for a feature film now slated for release in September 2019. Froggatt is, of course, back to star as much-loved lady’s maid Anna Bates.
The actress has teased a few details about what we can expect, telling The Daily Telegraph that the movie will be full of “romance, fun, surprises, sadness and intrigue. Everything people want, but elevated.”
She added: “Anna is in a really good place. She and Mr Bates have a baby boy, now 18 months old. She is passionate about helping Lady Mary with the running of Downton, about keeping the legacy going.”
But returning to filming the drama alongside original stars including Hugh Bonneville, Michelle Dockery, Elizabeth McGovern, Laura Carmichael, Jim Carter and Brendan Coyle was a strange experience.
“It was so surreal,” Froggatt said. “Everyone who was there at the end is there in the movie. It was like a lovely school reunion.”
Since playing Anna in Downton and winning a Golden Globe, Froggatt has been careful about the roles she accepted. She’s played teacher Laura Nielson in psychological thriller Liar, serial killer Mary Ann Cotton in Dark Angel, and Mary Jane Clairmont in the film Mary Shelley.
“I did stay away from working-class northerners for a little bit,” she explained. “Not that I’ve got anything against them, but I didn’t want to play their character all the time. And I loved Anna. I wanted her to stand on her own. I didn’t want to do some carbon copy of her.”
Downton Abbey will be released in UK cinemas on 13th September 2019