Downton Abbey Movie Suffering A Major Delay

The next Downton Abbey movie is facing a major delay in its scheduled release, something that's happening more and more in the industry

By Apeksha Bagchi | Updated

downton abbey new era

With the coronavirus pandemic “welcoming” 2022 with a new variant i.e., Omicron, studios are not willing to take a risk with the unstable box office earnings. After the recent announcement about the Tom Cruise starrer Mission Impossible 7 pushing back its release date, another much-anticipated title has decided to delay its theatrical debut. As per a new report, Downton Abbey: A New Era has shifted its release dates in the U.K. and U.S. 

As reported by Variety, the production companies behind Downton Abbey: A New Era- Focus Features, Universal Pictures International, and Carnival Films- have revealed that they have decided to postpone the film’s release. The film was originally slated to release on March 18, 2022, but after its recently reshuffled dates, it will now release in U.K. cinemas on Apr. 29 and in the U.S. on May 20 this year. 

The film is set to continue the storyline of the Emmy and BAFTA award-winning TV series Downton Abbey, which aired back in 2010. The series depicted the lives of the aristocratic Crawley family and their servants while showing how events like the Marconi Scandal, World War I, the Irish War of Independence, etc affected their lives. The show is credited as the most critically acclaimed English-language series of 2011 by Guinness World Records and is regarded as the most successful British costume drama series since the 1981’s show Brideshead Revisited. In terms of awards, it is the only international television series to have earned twenty-seven Primetime Emmy Nominations. 

The series’ storyline was picked up once again in the critically acclaimed Downton Abbey movie in 2019. The film saw Crawley’s English country house in Yorkshire being visited by the King and Queen of England. But nothing goes according to plan as an assassin also arrives, dead set on killing the monarch. Chaos ensues as the Crawleys and their servants get caught in the crossfire. 

Post its release, while the Downton Abbey film was lauded by the majority of the critics for expertly factoring in the merits that made the tv series a hit, a few found that many brilliant actors of the cast- Maggie Smith as the dowager Countess of Grantham, Hugh Bonneville as Lord Grantham, along with Imelda Staunton and Jim Carter- were not allowed to flex their full potential. The upcoming sequel is set to continue the story, though details about the plot have been kept under tight wraps. 

The upcoming sequel is directed by Simon Curtis and written by Julian Fellowes, who penned both the 2019 film and the original series. Downton Abbey: A New Era will follow the characters as they embark on a journey to the South of France to solve the air of mystery around the villa recently inherited by Dowager Countess. The film will feature most of the original principal cast, including Michelle Dockery, Joanne Froggatt, Hugh Bonneville, Maggie Smith, and Penelope Wilton.

Additionally, the original Downton Abbey group will be joined by new cast members like Hugh Dancy, Laura Haddock, Samantha Bond, Laura Carmichael, Robert James-Collier, Harry Hadden-Paton, Joanne Froggatt, Brendan Coyle, Nathalie Baye, Dominic West, Michelle Dockery, Kevin Doyle, Sue Johnston, Allen Leech, and Phyllis Logan. Emmy-winning Gareth Neame and Liz Trubridge are producing the film. 

Post its delayed release later this year, Downton Abbey 2 will debut on Peacock 45 days after its theatrical release.