Downton Abbey is coming back! But not on the small screen.
Focus Features announced Friday it has set an official production timeline for a cinematic continuation of the beloved British television series, one that will release in theaters with key members of the show’s principal cast returning for the project.
Though an official cast list has yet to be revealed, EW has learned Michelle Dockery, Hugh Bonneville, Maggie Smith, and Joanne Froggatt — each of whom have appeared in the PBS series since its first season back in 2010 — will be among those coming back for the movie, which begins filming later this year. Focus Features and Universal Pictures International are distributing the film around the world.
The show’s Oscar-winning creator Julian Fellowes wrote the film’s screenplay and is set to produce the picture alongside Carnival Films’ Gareth Naeme, Liz Trubridge, and executive producer Nigel Marchant. The Book Thief filmmaker Brian Percival, who helmed the show’s pilot episode, will direct. Plot details are still under wraps.
Across six seasons of its original run, Downton Abbey — set in the wealthy Crawley family’s country estate as it followed their intricate lives as well as those of the servants they employed at the turn of the 20th century — garnered a steady international following and sustained critical acclaim. It won three Golden Globes and 15 Emmys on top of 69 total nominations over the years.
“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,” Naeme said of the film via press statement. “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.”