The Crawleys will make a triumphant return to Highclere Castle, decked in pearls and braced for more melodrama, to film a “Downton Abbey” movie this summer.
You can expect to see Maggie Smith, Michelle Dockery, Hughe Bonneville and other cast members to return for the television show’s next chapter. “Downton Abbey,” the PBS “Masterpiece” hit that followed the lives of the Crawley family and the servants who worked for them at the turn of the 20th century in England, ended to many viewers’ dismay in Britain in November 2015, and in the United States in March 2016.
No release date has been set for the production, from Carnival Films, and producers declined to comment on the plot. Only certain characters will reappear, but the creative team behind the movie will include many of the people who worked on the show. The director Brian Percival, known for the “The Book Thief” and “About a Girl,” directed the series’ pilot and will direct the movie. The screenwriter Julian Fellowes, along with the producers Gareth Neame, Liz Trubridge and Nigel Marchant, will also return. Focus Features and Universal Pictures International will distribute the film.
“Julian’s script charms, thrills and entertains, and in Brian Percival’s hands we aim to deliver everything that one would hope for as ‘Downton’ comes to the big screen,” Mr. Neame said in a statement.
Set among the backdrop of the family’s Edwardian English country home, the show’s 52 episodes revealed the nuances of an era in which the aristocracy defined life in England. The series won 15 Emmys and garnered 69 Emmy nominations; its finale drew about 9.6 million viewers. Audience numbers in Britain reached close to 12 million for several seasons.
The spirit of “Downton Abbey” has lived on in an exhibition in New York, in a Victorian-era building filled with 55 authentic costumes and props and sets from the show. There, fans can find Mr. Carson’s pantry, the servants’ quarters and Crawley family portraits. The exhibition will be open through Sept. 3, for all those who might want to revisit the show before the movie makes its way out.