The Downton estate might look the same as it did when the British TV show first started airing in 2010, but things have definitely changed. In fact, the first full-length Downton Abbey movie trailer teases new arrivals, and a shocking departure, all sure to shake things up quite a bit. The trailer, released on Tuesday, May 21, gives fans their first real look at what's been happening at Downton since the series finale aired in 2015, and let's just say the Crawley family has been busy.
It's 1927 and Edith (Laura Carmichael) has returned home with her husband and young daughter just in time for some big news: the King and Queen are coming to Downton. The rest of the trailer is a flurry of preparations — "A royal luncheon, a parade, and a dinner? I'm going to have to sit down," remarks Ms. Patmore (Lesley Nicol). As seen in the clip, Mary (Michelle Dockery) is put in charge of the elaborate preparations, and, in her traditional Mary way, she soon finds herself in over her head and forced to turn to an old friend for help: Carson (Jim Carter). Yes, the beloved Downton butler who left his post at the end of the series due to illness, is back, and no doubt he's ready to whip the estate into shape for the royal visit.
Also spotted briefly in the clip are fan favorites Anna Bates (Joanne Froggatt) looking happy with her husband, John (Brendan Coyle), Mrs. Hughes (Phyllis Logan), and the Crawley patriarch and matriarch, Robert (Hugh Bonneville) and Cora (Elizabeth McGovern). But, don't worry, the swoon-worthy love interests of Downton Abbey also make their appearances. Look closely, and you can spot Tom Branson (Allen Leech) and Henry Talbot (Matthew Goode).
But the biggest shocker in the trailer might be the revelation that Mary is thinking of leaving Downton. Mary was, in many ways, the heart and soul of the series, not to mention the princess of the estate (despite having two sisters). Downton Abbey without Mary is almost as painful to imagine as Beauty without the Beast.
Of course, the dramatic twists and turns of Downton Abbey are just one of the reasons fans would tune in for the show. We all know what you're really here for: the clothes. Based on the clip, the famous Downton wardrobe is as beautiful and intricate as ever. And, these characters are going to have to look their best if they're to meet the King and Queen of England, whose casting has yet to be announced.
Downton Abbey will hit theaters on September 20, which gives those not familiar with the series plenty of time to catch up on all six seasons of the delightfully British show. And, for avid fans of the show who might be worried that the movie will take the story in a different direction, fear not. Downton creator Julian Fellowes wrote the screenplay himself with frequent episode director Michael Engler stepping behind the camera.
If nothing else, the Downton Abbey movie was definitely made for the fans. And, really, that's all one can ask for.