Siobhan Finneran is leaving Downton Abbey. The actress has played Lady Grantham's cunning maid Sarah O'Brien on the period drama since it began but has confirmed she will not appear in season four.
"I'm not doing any more. O'Brien is a thoroughly despicable human being - that was great to play," she told huffingtonpost.co.uk.
According to TVLine, her exit will not be shown onscreen and is expected to take place during the six month time jump between the end of season three and the beginning of season four. However, the character will not be killed off, leaving open the possibility of a return.
Siobhan is just the latest star to leave the hugely popular series, Dan Stevens, who played Matthew Crawley, and Jessica Brown Findlay, who starred as Lady Sybil, both left the series after their characters were killed off last season. Producer Gareth Neame recently insisted Dan's departure would turn into a "great opportunity" for his onscreen wife Lady Mary Crawley [Michelle Dockery].
Maggie Smith has never watched Downton Abbey. Although the 78-year-old actress stars as the formidable Dowager Countess Violet Crawley on the show, she admitted she has never tuned in to watch her performance onscreen.
"I don't sit down and watch it. I haven't watched it. I will look at it when it's all over, maybe. Because it's frustrating - I always see things that I would like to do differently and think, 'Oh, why in the name of God did I do that?'" she said in an interview with 60 Minutes.
Despite winning numerous awards - including a Golden Globe, a BAFTA, two Emmys, and a Screen Actors Guild Award - for playing the countess, Maggie insists she has no interest in fame: "I don't feel any different to the way I felt before, and I'm not quite sure what [being a star] means. I am familiar to people now, which is what I was not before. That is entirely due to the television set."
Downton Abbey will return for a fourth season. ITV has commissioned the show - which takes place in the early 20th century - for eight new episodes plus a feature length Christmas special with filming set to begin in February 2013.
"Viewers can look forward to more drama, comedy, love, hatred, jealousy, rivalry, ambition, despair and romance," said Gareth Neame, Managing Director of Carnival Films, the show's makers and Executive Producer of Downton Abbey.
Laura Mackie, Director of Drama at ITV, 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."
Gareth and Laura both credit creator Julian Fellowes with Downton Abbey's extraordinary success and revealed the new series will introduce more new characters.
Anna Kendrick is desperate for a role on Downton Abbey.
The 27-year-old actress is a huge fan of many British TV shows but thinks her dream of appearing in the period drama is "inappropriate" as it isn't likely to come true. "I just watched Game of Thrones and the first two seasons of Downton Abbey. I have the most inappropriate fantasies about being on those shows - there's not a part for a tiny American girl in either, but I can dream," she said.
Anna is also a huge fan of talent show The X Factor, and was thrilled when girl group Little Mix won last year. "I have to catch up on Sherlock and X Factor. I loved that group who won last year, Little Mix. During their first performance I wanted to scream at the TV, 'Do you guys know that these are really good, really solid vocals.'"
And TV isn't the only thing Anna loves about the UK - she has "cravings" for English tea: "Every time I go to England the first thing I do is have tea. I crave it to the point where I panic, 'What am I going to do when I get home? I don't have a kettle.' But then the craving disappears - it's like something's pumped into the air."
Here are some of the TV on DVD options available this week:
- All in the Family (Season 8)
- Black Butler (Season 1, Part 1)
- Criss Angel: Mindfreak (Season 6)
- Doctor Who: The Dominators (Story 44)
- Doctor Who: Meglos (Story 111)
- ER (Season 14)
- Greek: Chapter Five (Season 3)
- Hot in Cleveland (Season 1)
- Masterpiece Classic: Downton Abbey
- Rules of Engagement (Season 4)
- Skins (Volume 4)
- Universe (Season 5)
- Voyage to the Bottom of the Sea (Season 4, Vol. 2)
Make sure to also check out the DVD and Blu-ray film options for this week.
Read More | Amazon
© Gear Live Media, LLC. 2007 – User-posted content, unless source is quoted, is licensed under a Creative Commons Public Domain License. Gear Live graphics, logos, designs, page headers, button icons, videos, articles, blogs, forums, scripts and other service names are the trademarks of Gear Live Inc.