Hugh Bonneville confirms second Downton Abbey film is in the works

"A little thing called coronavirus got in the way"

Hugh Bonneville, Michelle Dockery, Maggie Smith in Downton Abbey

It’s official: Bridgerton’s great aunt, Downton Abbey is on its way back into our lives. Hoorah!

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Rumours have been swirling of a sequel to the 2019 Downton film, and Hugh Bonneville, who plays Lord Grantham, has confirmed that the project is underway.

Speaking to Alex Jones and Jermaine Jenas on The One Show, he said that the writers have already settled on a story, but the pandemic has delayed filming.

Responding to whether the series would return to TV, Bonneville said, “There won’t be any more TV episodes, but we would love to make another movie. There is a script, it has been written and seen, but a little thing called coronavirus got in the way of us filming it. It would be lovely to think that later this year the cameras could start rolling.”

Exciting stuff! Bonneville didn’t confirm which of his co-stars would join him in the film. However it is unlikely that fan favourite Dame Maggie Smith would return, given that her character, the Dowager Countess, was facing up to her mortality at the end of the first film. Still, stranger things have happened…

Bonneville was on the programme to promote To Olivia, a new film on Sky Cinema, in which he and Keeley Hawes play Roald Dahl and his wife, Patricia Neal. The movie tells the story of the famous couple coming to terms with the loss of one of their children, and will be available to watch from 19th February.

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The One Show airs on BBC1, weeknights at 7pm. If you’re looking for something else to watch, check out our TV Guide.