Click to Skip Ad
Closing in...
Zack Snyder Defends 'Man Of Steel' Finale, Ben Affleck Reveals Bruce Wayne Knew People Who Died In That Battle Zack Snyder Defends 'Man Of Steel' Finale, Ben Affleck Reveals Bruce Wayne Knew People Who Died In That Battle New Book Contends Eric Stoltz Was “Difficult” & The Cast Wasn’t Shocked He Was Replaced On ‘Back To The Future’ New Book Contends Eric Stoltz Was “Difficult” & The Cast Wasn’t Shocked He Was Replaced On ‘Back To The Future’ Watch: Scott Lang Wants To Call The Avengers In New International 'Ant-Man' Trailer Watch: Scott Lang Wants To Call The Avengers In New International 'Ant-Man' Trailer The 20 Worst Films Of 2015 So Far The 20 Worst Films Of 2015 So Far Zack Snyder Reveals The Easter Egg Idea He Pitched Christopher Nolan And David Goyer For 'Man Of Steel' Zack Snyder Reveals The Easter Egg Idea He Pitched Christopher Nolan And David Goyer For 'Man Of Steel' New Images Of Bruce Wayne, Lex Luthor, More In 'Batman v. Superman,' Ben Affleck Compares Batman To Hamlet New Images Of Bruce Wayne, Lex Luthor, More In 'Batman v. Superman,' Ben Affleck Compares Batman To Hamlet Paul Thomas Anderson To Write And Possibly Direct Warner Bros' ‘Pinocchio’ For Robert Downey Jr. Paul Thomas Anderson To Write And Possibly Direct Warner Bros' ‘Pinocchio’ For Robert Downey Jr. Watch: First Trailer For Oliver Stone’s ‘Snowden’ Starring Joseph Gordon-Levitt, Shailene Woodley & Nicolas Cage Watch: First Trailer For Oliver Stone’s ‘Snowden’ Starring Joseph Gordon-Levitt, Shailene Woodley & Nicolas Cage Review: ‘Terminator: Genisys’ Starring Arnold Schwarzenegger, Emilia Clarke, Jai Courtney & Jason Clarke Review: ‘Terminator: Genisys’ Starring Arnold Schwarzenegger, Emilia Clarke, Jai Courtney & Jason Clarke 'Thor: The Dark World' Director Alan Taylor Says His Marvel Experience Was "Particularly Wrenching" 'Thor: The Dark World' Director Alan Taylor Says His Marvel Experience Was "Particularly Wrenching" Watch: Anna Paquin Is Rescued In Clip From 'X-Men: Days of Future Past - The Rogue Cut' Watch: Anna Paquin Is Rescued In Clip From 'X-Men: Days of Future Past - The Rogue Cut' Kevin Feige Says 'Spider-Man 2' Is "One Of The Best Superhero Movies Ever," Talks John Hughes Influence On New Spidey Kevin Feige Says 'Spider-Man 2' Is "One Of The Best Superhero Movies Ever," Talks John Hughes Influence On New Spidey Watch: Live Your Ultimate Fantasy With The First NSFW Trailer For Gaspar Noe's 'Love' Watch: Live Your Ultimate Fantasy With The First NSFW Trailer For Gaspar Noe's 'Love' Review & Recap: ‘True Detective’ Season 2, Episode 2, ‘Night Finds You’ Review & Recap: ‘True Detective’ Season 2, Episode 2, ‘Night Finds You’ The Punisher Will Reportedly Appear As The Villain In ‘Daredevil’ Season 2 The Punisher Will Reportedly Appear As The Villain In ‘Daredevil’ Season 2 The 25 Best TV Shows Of The 2014/2015 Season The 25 Best TV Shows Of The 2014/2015 Season The 25 Best Animated Films Of The 21st Century So Far The 25 Best Animated Films Of The 21st Century So Far The 50 Best Films Of The Decade So Far The 50 Best Films Of The Decade So Far The 25 Best Horror Films Of The 21st Century So Far The 25 Best Horror Films Of The 21st Century So Far The 20 Best TV Shows Of The 2013/2014 Season The 20 Best TV Shows Of The 2013/2014 Season

Maid O'Brien Is Leaving 'Downton Abbey,' But 6 New Actors Are Joining The Show

The Playlist By Edward Davis | The Playlist March 3, 2013 at 10:21AM

People are dropping like flies on PBS' popular period drama, "Downton Abbey." At the end of season 3 (massive spoiler alert if you haven't gone this far yet), Dan Stevens' character Matthew Crawley died in a tragic (and rather ridiculous) car accident just moments after his first son was born (he was seemingly so elated he was driving while pleasantly looking up at the clouds without a care in the world). The reason for this hasty writing-him-out of-the-turn was because Stevens, appearing next in the WikiLeaks drama "The Fifth Estate," evidently feels like Hollywood is calling and he better strike while the iron is hot.
1
Siobhan Finneran, Downton Abbey, O'Brien

People are dropping like flies on PBS' popular period drama, "Downton Abbey." At the end of season 3 (massive spoiler alert if you haven't gone this far yet), Dan Stevens' character Matthew Crawley died in a tragic (and rather ridiculous) car accident just moments after his first son was born (he was seemingly so elated he was driving while pleasantly looking up at the clouds without a care in the world). The reason for this hasty writing-him-out of-the-turn was because Stevens, appearing next in the WikiLeaks drama "The Fifth Estate," evidently feels like Hollywood is calling and he better strike while the iron is hot. 

This strange turn is going to put the increasingly-soap opera-ish "Downton Abbey" in a very awkward place next season. And one more actor has had enough. Actress Siobhan Finneran, who plays the scheming and nasty maid O'Brien, said she will not be returning to the show. “I’m not doing any more," she told the Mirror U.K. "O’Brien is a thoroughly despicable human being – that was great to play.” The character was indeed despicable, constantly meddling, scheming in deceitfully underhanded ways that generally got the rest of the servants on the show in deep hot water or worse, fired. But even for O'Brien, this one note duplicity was getting cartoonish so perhaps Finneran felt the same. Worse, the show will have to try and figure out how to write her out of the show with one line of expository dialogue rather than just finally show her plans backfire on her (presumably she won't be back for season Four at all, though that's not 100% confirmed). 

But when two actors leave, six more enter. Returning to the show for season 4 will be Shirley MacLaine as Martha Levinson, the haughty American mother of Cora Crawley (Elizabeth McGovern). New additions to show will be "Weekend" star Tom Cullen and British character actors Nigel Harman, Dame Harriet Walters, Dame Kiri Te Kanawa, Joanna David and Julian Ovenden.

"Downton Abbey has seen many great characters visit the house over the years and we couldn't be more thrilled to welcome the new faces that will be joining the regular cast of 'Downton' in series 4,” executive producer Gareth Neame said in a statement. “We hope audiences will be as excited about them as we are."


This article is related to: Downton Abbey, Shirley MacLaine, Television, TV News


The Playlist

The obsessives' guide to contemporary cinema via film discussion, news, reviews, features, nostalgia, movie music, soundtracks, DVDs and more.


E-Mail Updates