Focus Features chairman Peter Kujawski announced today that Focus has set production with Carnival Films on the Downton Abbey movie. The original principal cast from the acclaimed television series have assembled to return for the feature which will begin production later this summer. Also returning from the series is its creator Academy-Award winner Julian Fellowes who wrote the film's screenplay and will produce alongside Gareth Neame and Liz Trubridge. Brian Percival (The Book Thief, About a Girl), who directed the series' pilot, will direct the film. Nigel Marchant will also return to executive produce.
The television series Downton Abbey followed the lives of the Crawley family and the servants who worked for them at the turn of the 20th century in an Edwardian English country home. Over its 6 seasons, the series garnered 3 Golden Globe Awards, 15 Primetime Emmy Awards, a Special BAFTA award and 69 Emmy nominations in total, making Downton Abbey the most nominated non-US television show in the history of the Emmys - even earning a Guinness World Record for the highest critically rated TV show along the way. Gareth Neame, Carnival's Executive Chairman and the film's producer said this about the movie.
"When the television series drew to a close it was our dream to bring the millions of global fans a movie and now, after getting many stars aligned, we are shortly to go into production. 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".
Commented Focus chairman Peter Kujawski.
"Since the series ended, fans of Downton have long been waiting for the Crawley family's next chapter. We're thrilled to join this incredible group of filmmakers, actors and craftspeople, led by Julian Fellowes and Gareth Neame, in bringing back the world of Downton to the big screen."
The Downton Abbey movie is a Carnival Films production, with Focus Features and Universal Pictures International distributing.
The world of Downton Abbey can be celebrated right now in the first ever fully immersive experience: Downton Abbey: The Exhibition. Based on the globally beloved TV phenomenon, visitors are transported on an incredible journey through the grand home of the Crawleys; from Lady Mary's bedroom and the sumptuous dining room, to Mrs. Patmore's hectic kitchen. Including over 55 authentic costumes as well as props and sets from the TV series, Downton Abbey comes vividly to life through interactive displays and visitor experiences. Launched in November to huge visitor attendance, rapturous fan feedback and extraordinary critical acclaim, the Exhibition showcases the enduring global appeal of Downton via a stunning recreation of the house, the fashion and the history of the era. The Exhibition is based in New York atে W 57th Street until 3rd September. Tickets are available at www.downtonexhibition.com.ڂ
Carnival Films is a division of NBCUniversal International Studios and one of the UK's leading drama producers. In addition to producing Downton Abbey, the company is responsible for current primetime series such as The Last Kingdom for Netflix and Jamestown and Stan Lee's Lucky Man for Sky One. Founded in 1978, Carnival's many shows include Poirot, Hotel Babylon, Whitechapel and Dracula, as well as award-winning mini-series such as Traffik, Any Human Heart, The Lost Honour of Christopher Jefferies and The Hollow Crown anthology.
Carnival has received a host of national and international awards over its 40-year history including Primetime Emmys, Golden Globes and BAFTAs, and has been recognized as the UK's best production company at both the Bulldog Awards and Broadcast Awards.