Will Maggie Smith Return for ‘Downtown Abbey’ Movie Sequel? One of Her Co-Stars Weighs In

Will Maggie Smith reprise her role as the funny and honest Dowager Countess in a possible sequel to the Downton Abbey movie? Find out what one of Smith’s co-stars has to say about the likelihood of her return. Warning: spoiler alerts about the movie ahead. 

Where did we last see the Dowager Countless?

When audiences last saw the Dowager Countess, she had received some potentially devastating news about her health. Toward the end of the film, after everyone at Downton Abbey — both upstairs and downstairs — had been preoccupied with a visit (inspired by a real-life royal visit) from King George V (Simon Jones) and Queen Mary (Geraldine James) — the character learned her health was in jeopardy after traveling to London for an appointment with a doctor. The Dowager Countess had a particularly emotional conversation with Lady Mary (Michelle Dockery) about the state of her health, according to Cinema Blend.

By the end of the movie, her health took a turn for the worse, with everyone thinking the Dowager Countess could breathe her last breath at any moment. Thankfully, audiences didn’t have to say goodbye to the beloved character but will Smith and the Dowager Countess be written out of a possible sequel by Julian Fellowes due to the illness? Maybe, maybe not. 

Producer says she could’ve been misdiagnosed

Gareth Neame, a producer of Downton Abbey, touched on the idea of a sequel citing the way the first film ended as a challenge. Particularly with Smith’s character. But he had an idea for a relatively easy fix to the storyline if the Dowager Countess were to continue on. 

“Well, we’ll see. There is a big matter at the end of the film that takes us in a slightly different direction,” Neame said before adding, “There have been misdiagnoses before, so you never know,” according to Cinema Blend. 

So, the Dowager Countess may have been misdiagnosed? We’d be all for it seeing as she’s one of our favorite characters in the PBS series that ran for six seasons before ending in 2015. 

Mrs. Patmore thinks chances of a return are ‘50/50’

Actress Lesley Nicol or Mrs. Beryl Patmore as she’s known to fans of Downton Abbey weighed in on the chances of Smith reprising her role yet again in a sequel to the show’s first movie. 

Speaking to the Daily Mail, Nicol said ultimately it comes down to Smith and Fellowes and what they want to see happen. 

“Who the heck knows? It looks like, if you’ve seen the film, it looks like that’s bye, bye Maggie, but who the heck knows? We don’t know,” she said. 

Maggie Smith in 2017
Maggie Smith presents award on May 12, 2017 | David M Benett/Dave Benett/Getty Images

Nicol continued saying she didn’t even want to speculate because anything can happen. 

“I wouldn’t begin to guess, because I wouldn’t rule it out, and I would say it’s 50/50. She might not. It depends what Julian does and what he wants to do and what she wants to do,” the 66-year-old actress said. 

It’s worth noting Smith previously said she thought a Downton Abbey movie would open with her character’s funeral. We will to have to wait and see what’s in store for everyone at Downton Abbey if a sequel does in fact happen. One has yet to be confirmed.

Get a refresher on all the drama that’s happened in Downton Abbey with a 10-minute video recap given by the cast.