Imelda Staunton Confirms Final “Downton Abbey” Film

Whether she’s terrifying audiences as maddening and believable villains or stunning them as Queen Elizabeth, the truth remains that the world can’t get enough of Imelda Staunton. Her recent announcement regarding Downton Abbey, therefore, is welcome news.

Staunton, who memorably played Dolores Umbridge in the fifth and seventh installments of the Harry Potter film series, gave fans much to talk about during an appearance on The Zoe Ball Breakfast Show. When asked directly whether she would be sharing anything about future Downton plans, perhaps addressing numerous rumors about a possible seventh season, Staunton acquiesced in the most straightforward way possible. “There will be the final film…. There you go,” she told Ball.



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Downton Abbey ran as a television series from 2010 to 2015. It primarily featured the lives of the Crawleys, an aristocratic family in Yorkshire, between 1912 and 1926. Staunton starred in the two films that followed as Lady Maud Bagshaw, a lady-in-waiting to the Queen and cousin of the Crawleys. Delightfully, the character’s connections and personality allowed for many memorable moments with another Potter alumnus, Dame Maggie Smith. Smith was featured in the series and first two films as the matriarch of the Crawley family, the Dowager Countess of Grantham.

That’s not all Imelda Staunton has coming up, however. After four years of delays due to the COVID-19 pandemic, the actor is taking to the West End stage as the titular character in Hello, Dolly!, as we previously reported in Casting News. And she certainly seems to be excited about it. Telling director Dominic Cooke that she looked forward to bringing the audience joy, she joked that some probably wouldn’t be familiar with the classic. “Someone said to me: am I playing Dolly Parton?” she said laughingly. “I’m flattered!”

The show will run from July 6 to September 14 at the London Palladium.