'I am out of the loop over Downton Abbey film announcement' admits Lord Fellowes

Are we set for a Downton Abbey film announcement?
Are we set for a Downton Abbey film announcement?
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Downton Abbey creator Lord Julian Fellowes has said he is "completely out of the loop" and knows nothing about an expected announcement surrounding the show.

Fans of the hit ITV series - which ended in 2015 - were left speculating over whether a film was set to be confirmed after posts sent from the programme's official social media accounts said that "big news" was coming.

Speaking to the Press Association at the BFI Luminous Fundraising Gala in London on Tuesday, Lord Fellowes said he was completely unaware of the posts.

"I didn't even know there was supposed to be a big announcement, nobody even told me that," he said.

"So I am completely out of the loop."

Confirming he has a script for a Downton film written, he said he "did not want to feel there was nothing there if they decided to make the movie".

Pressed on whether filming has begun, he said "no, no, no, no", adding: "As far as I am concerned we haven't announced it, it hasn't begun.

"Nobody has told me different - but then like the husband I am the last to know."

On Monday, posts were made on the official Downton Abbey Facebook and Instagram pages, promising followers there would be an upcoming announcement.

Many thought the cryptic message meant the rumoured film would be announced, but nothing has yet been revealed.

Earlier this year, an executive at studio NBCUniversal said the film remains in the works, with production likely to begin in 2018.

In July, Joanne Froggatt - who played lady's maid Anna Bates in the series - said that none of the cast were "very sure what is going on" with regards to the film.

She told the Press Association: "It's all a little confusing for us so I'm sure it's confusing for everybody else as well. Hopefully it will all become clear one day.

"We are all keen to do it, there was a point where we were all available and it didn't quite happen for one reason or another so it's just one of those things, you just have to be very relaxed about it."

The programme, comprised of an ensemble cast including Dame Maggie Smith, Hugh Bonneville, Michelle Dockery and Laura Carmichael, focused on the lives of the aristocratic Crawley family and their servants in the fictional Yorkshire country estate Downton Abbey, and took place between 1912 and 1916.

It enjoyed a successful six-series run from 2010 until 2015, winning a collection of prestigious awards across the world, including Emmys, Golden Globes and a TV Bafta.