The renewal of the Sunday evening series comes ahead of the fifth season finale on Sunday evening on ITV. Once again Downton Abbey has commanded big audiences with consolidated ratings of over 10 million viewers per episode for the current series. The ITV drama is the most watched on British television.
“We have had an amazing reaction to the story lines, acting and production values of Downton Abbey this year and the whole team is thrilled to be moving ahead with a new season of the show. This will provide audiences with a fresh opportunity to see what will befall our much loved characters.” – Gareth Neame, Carnival’s Managing Director
Fans of the show will be delighted at the series’ renewal especially as it follows speculation over its future. Press reports had suggested that its creator Julian Fellowes was looking to wrap the series up in order to work on other projects. The renewal of Downton Abbey for a sixth season won’t silence that speculation indefinitely but confirmation of a further series should keep Downton fans happy for now.
“It is fantastic that Downton continues to be such a phenomenon – still the most popular drama on ITV in its fifth series – and we are thrilled to have commissioned a sixth series. We don’t know yet what Julian has planned, but we are looking forward to working with him, the fantastic cast and Carnival again and have no doubt series six will be unmissable.”- Steve November, ITV’s Director of Drama Commissioning
Downton Abbey’s stellar cast includes Dame Maggie Smith, Penelope Wilton, Hugh Bonneville, Jim Carter, Phyllis Logan, Elizabeth McGovern and Michelle Dockery. The fifth season finale will air this Sunday and will see Lady Rose’s (Lily James) marriage to Atticus Aldridge (Matt Barber), while downstairs the ghost of Mr. Green (Nigel Harman) will come back to haunt Anna (Joanne Froggatt) and Mr. Bates (Brendan Coyle).
Following the fifth season finale the drama will return at Christmas for its annual festive special.