'Downton Abbey' Season 6 Premiere: Producer Admits Series Could Have Lasted Longer, Gives Another Movie Update [VIDEO]
It appears that Maggie Smith is the reason why Downton Abbey is seeing its final days.
On Friday, The Sun shared details from executive producer Gareth Neame who mentioned that the British drama could have lasted longer if Smith (who plays Violet Crawley) had planned to stick around for a potential future.
"We easily could have gone for a seventh season, but if I'd have said, 'We haven't got Maggie,' it would have been a shadow of itself," Neame said.
With that being said, everything is still working out the way it should and there is still a good reason to let the series run its course after six seasons.
"We all feel very blessed," the producer said. "Nobody regrets ending when we did. We have a final season that's as strong as the first because we quit while we were ahead. We had the ambition that we had a complete show."
Neame then discussed the possibility of making a Downton movie- nothing is official, but he is "keen" on the idea.
"There is no script and no firm plan, but it's certainly something there is talk of," he said. "We're not in denial about anything. We'll know more next year."
Smith, herself, seems pretty gung ho on letting her character go, saying the Dowager "must be 110 by now."
Downton Abbey Season 6 premieres in the United States on Sunday, January 3 on PBS.