Donwton Abbey to end in 2014?

Michelle Dockery

Downton Abbey star Michelle Dockery

'Downton Abbey' is rumoured to be ending next year as an increasing number of the show's stars leave to pursue film careers.

'Donwton Abbey' could come to an end next year.

The popular ITV period drama, which is now broadcast in over 100 countries around the world, is likely to be axed after 2014 as a growing number of the show's stars leave the programme to pursue a career in Hollywood.

A source told the Daily Mirror newspaper: "After five years on 'Downton', they are understandably excited at the prospect of taking up some of the roles coming their way."

Senior executives are already referring to next year's Christmas special as the last, according to the paper, although an ITV spokesperson said they had "no plans" to end the show yet.

Major cast members including Hugh Bonneville (Lord Grantham) and Michelle Dockery (Lady Mary Crawley) are said to want to follow in the footsteps of Dan Stevens (Matthew Crawley) and Jessica Brown-Findlay (Lady Sybil Crawley) and pursue major film opportunities.

Another key reason for ending the show is said to be the cost of renewing contracts in 2015.

The insider added: "It would simply be too costly to keep them all."

'Downton Abbey' is ITV's most popular drama, bringing in ratings of 11.8 million last series, and has been increasing in popularity since its debut in 2010.


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