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Downton Abbey, the movie?

And a pivotal character has apparently already signed on.

If you felt a sad, yawning emptiness when the final episode of Downton Abbey played earlier this year, here’s some news to lift your viewing spirits. The long-talked about movie version of the hit show is suddenly looking more likely with reports that Maggie Smith has signed on.

Maggie, 81, who won an Emmy for her performance as Violet, Dowager Countess of Grantham, had previously rejected having anything to do with a rumoured movie.

Asked if she would appear in the movie should it happen, Maggie told UK TV presenter Graham Norton: “I can’t – what age would she be? By the time we finished, she must have been about 110. It couldn’t go on and on, it just didn’t make sense.” (You can just hear her saying that.)

But, the Guardian reports, at an event in Los Angeles over the weekend, Michael Fox, who plays personable valet Andy Parker on the show, claimed that Maggie had signed on for the movie.

At the same event, show creator and writer Julian Fellowes has also expressed conservative enthusiasm about the prospect.

Speaking to Good Morning Britain following the victory on Sunday, Fellowes reiterated his commitment.

“I would love to make [a Downtown movie],” he said. “As far as I am concerned, I am completely up for it. Most of the cast are up for it.”

And in other reports, it seems the cast is mostly board too.

“I’d love to do it,”Joanne Froggatt, who played Anna, said. “I think everybody would. We’re all willing to do it, and willing it to happen… As long as we can get everyone together, it would be delightful.

“We’ve talked about it and we’re hopeful that there will be a chance to do it again.”

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