Downton Abbey Renewed for Season 4

Downton Abbey Renewed for Season 4Three weeks after airing Downton Abbey‘s Season 3 finale in the UK — and six weeks ahead of that cycle’s Stateside premiere on PBS — ITV has picked up the acclaimed drama for Season 4.

Though no formal announcement has been made yet by PBS, the broadcaster is expected to air the fourth season here in the U.S.

VIDEO | Downton Abbey Actresses Tease a ‘Much More Grown-Up’ Season 3

Touting the renewal, exec producer Gareth Neame said in a statement, “Viewers can look forward to more drama, comedy, love, hatred, jealousy, rivalry, ambition, despair and romance.” ITV exec Laura Mackie added, “We’re thrilled to welcome back a drama series that has become a much anticipated part of all our lives every autumn and achieved success around the globe. [Series creator] Julian Fellowes and the production team, led by Gareth and the producer Liz Trubridge, never rest on their laurels and have exciting plans” for Season 4.

As noted above, Downton aired its Season 3 finale on ITV earlier this month, and will cap that run with the traditional Christmas special airing Dec. 25 across the pond. Production on Season 4’s eight new episodes/Christmas special will commence in February 2013.

Stateside, Downton Season 3 will premiere Jan. 6, 2013 on PBS. (Watch the trailer below.) In the interim, a Season 2 recap/Season 3 preview special, Downton Abbey Revisited, will air Nov. 25 on PBS.

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  1. J says:

    But will Dan Stevens be back?

    • victoria angeles says:

      Dan Stevens has to realize he can’t leave the series! All that angst we had to go through until Matthew finally got together with Mary can’t just be cut short! A LIFE LIVED TOGETHER was the crux of the glorious Christmas proposal. Not fair! We will not forgive him!

    • Susanna says:

      No he wont

  2. mayiread says:

    Dan Stevens and Maggie Smith need to come back. They are the life’s breath and soul f this show (as is Carson. Gotta love Carson)

  3. Marianne says:

    Figured as much, but so happy :)

  4. Lorie says:


  5. Linderella says:

    Great news!

  6. Larc says:

    I recall reading somewhere that Maggie Smith won’t be returning for another season. Her character is old, so death would logically occur at some point. But the show wouldn’t be as good without her. At any rate, it’s great news DA has been renewed.

  7. Reward says:

    Maggie Smith must come back. I can’t imagine DA without her.

  8. ladyhelix says:

    I was half way through season 1 of Downton Abbey and it was dragging (seemed to me to be lots of unlikable characters and pointless “drama”). Should I resume watching? Does it get better?

    While wandering away I stumbled onto BBC Sherlock and haven’t I looked back since – as it’s smart, funny, and I’m very invested – in all the characters. I care about them. DA – not so much (not at all). Is that apt to change on DA – or are they apples and oranges?

    • Aaron says:

      I feel the same way. I tried watching season one and found it a little boring and wasn’t rooting for anyone but the cute red head maid. Everyone seems to love it so maybe it picks up with season 2.

      • ben says:

        If you don’t love season one, you’ll never love it. And anyway, the cute maid is not in it beyond season one.

      • Britta Unfiltered says:

        Season 1 was pretty good, I thought, but season 2 was extremely disappointing and soapy in a really bad way. If you didn’t like season 1, I think you’d hate season 2. A lot of their storylines that were supposed to be dramatic just ended up making me laugh with their ridiculousness. Like the Canadian con artist who pretended to be the dead British cousin that died on the Titanic and had had amnesia all those years he was missing. You see…the amnesia didn’t just make him forget he was an heir to a great fortune…it also made him forget to speak with a British accent and he thus adopted the Canadian accent! That was an actual storyline. I haven’t decided if I’m sticking around for season 3 or not. I think they should have quit while they were ahead, but that’s just my opinion. I’m sure there are millions of others who would disagree with me.

        • ben says:

          @Britta – season 2 felt off because of the war drama, I think – a lot of things felt very detached. Stick with season 3, it’s much more like season one. The drama is in the little things again. The only thing which remains detached is Bates.

    • Sara says:

      I watched all 3 seasons. Honestly, it has some good episodes in latter seasons, but season 1 was much better IMO.

    • Tinemi says:

      I love both shows, but they are as oil and water, so different. I don’t think you will like it if it didn’t captured you the first time… but who knows, give it a try and if the answer is still no, at least you tried :)

  9. Barb says:

    Well duh…

  10. LJW says:

    dan stevens and michelle dockery were completely wasted in series 3. they became boring after getting married.

    • Zedd says:

      The life of newlywed toffs is going to be fairly boring. I’m fine with a tinge more of reality and mundanity than each week having a scarred mystery wounded soldier turning the whole thing into a Nancy Drew story.
      Its a class opera, not a whodunit.

  11. Shaun says:

    Season 3 was pretty good,the last episode didn’t even feel like a season finale.

    • Amanda says:

      That’s probably because of this year’s Christmas special. Here in the US that is our season finale as PBS airs it the week after the original season 3 finale airs.

  12. Glad to hear it. Season 1 was good, 2 not so much and 3 was a lot better. Can’t wait to see where 4 goes. I also remember there being something about a prequel involving Lord Grantham and his wife before they got married. I know it was picked up by ITV but don’t know when it will air. Can’t wait for this years Christmas episode.

  13. Chuck Finley (AJ) says:

    Love this show and season 3 was great. Bate will always be my favorite character in this series. I hope season 4 can manage to work in Thomas taking a bullet to the face instead of the hand somehow. Is there a Christmas episode this year? I know that the season 3 Bluray is already out in the UK so now I am wondering.

  14. Scribe says:

    The actor who plays Carson will forever be known to me as the hilarious French Resistance fighter in Top Secret. Anyone get a chance to watch that film…he damned funny.

  15. KJ says:

    Just heard Dan Stevens (Matthew) is leaving the show and won’t be involved in Season 4 (minus the Christmas episode and maybe the first official episode of the season) – is this true??? Currently the Daily Mail, Huff Post, and some other news outlets are reporting an “insider” is saying this….god I hope not! It wouldn’t be the same without him!!

  16. cheah says:

    no! this cannot happen…..Matthew cannot leave…who will manage Downton from falling…and his son…what will happen when there isn’t Matthew there to raise his heir with Mary?

  17. Linda says:

    when is season 4 starting?