Dan Stevens: Killing off Downton Abbey's Matthew on Christmas Day was not my doing
Tuesday 04 June 2013
Former Downton Abbey star Dan Stevens has insisted that he had no say in his character's controversial death in the ITV period drama.
Matthew Crawley was killed off at Christmas in a car crash, in an exit that shocked millions of viewers.
Stevens, who had already made the decision to leave the drama, told the Radio Times: "I am sorry about that! I think what emerged is that it's an unwritten rule that you're not supposed to die on British television on Christmas Day, and that, specifically, was not my doing."
He said of the costume drama, created by Julian Fellowes: "We didn't see that script until the very last minute, so we didn't know exactly how they were going to do it.
"There was a bit of a sweepstake going on and all sorts of speculation like, would he be gored by a stag in the Highlands? Or was some masonry going to fall from a parapet and hit him on the head?"
Stevens, who recently enjoyed a spell on Broadway in The Heiress, said: "I didn't have any say in the manner in which he went. Ultimately, it was in the hands of Julian and the producers."
But he added: "It was right that he didn't run off and have an affair with somebody. I don't think that would have been right for Matthew as a character."
Stevens will be appearing later this month in the film Summer In February, a romance set in Edwardian England.
He told the magazine that his character in the film might bear a resemblance to Matthew Crawley.
"For the last part of filming Summer in February I was actually filming Downton too," he said. "There was an overlap and, as a result, Gilbert Evans ended up looking curiously similar to a certain Matthew Crawley, because the hair and everything else had to match."
musicReview: Culture Club performs live for first time in 12 years
Children's bookseller wins The Independent's new author search
Arts & Ents blogs
- 1 Russell Brand says he will 'probably' give up acting to focus on his revolution
- 2 Watch what happened when food critics were unknowingly served McDonald's
- 3 David Beckham's Haig Club whisky is exactly what’s wrong with the Highlands
- 4 Queen's first tweet: Reply telling Her Majesty to 'f*** off' broadcast on BBC News
- 5 #AskNigelFarage: Twitter starts hilarious Q&A for Ukip leader
This is what a film sex scene actually looks like on set (mostly awkward)
Revolutionary lost Caravaggio painting 'Mary Magdalen in Ecstasy' identified
Pottermore: JK Rowling writes new Harry Potter story featuring 'greying' 33-year-old wizard
JK Rowling to publish new Harry Potter story online for Halloween
Fury, film review: Brad Pitt stars in visceral and brutally ugly drama that reminds us war is hell
Of course, teenage girls need role models – but not like beauty vlogger Zoella
Cameron is warned 'no possibility' of UK reducing immigration and that bid to bring in quota on migrant workers would be illegal
Support for EU membership 'at highest level since 1991' with most Brits wanting to stay 'in'
Tony Blair 'says Ed Miliband will lose 2015 general election'
Thousands with degenerative conditions classified as 'fit to work in future' – despite no possibility of improvement
Putin: The US is to blame for almost all the world's major conflicts