Maggie Smith, the iconic actress who portrays the unflappable Dowager Countess in the beloved period drama “Downton Abbey,” was left in a state of shock after a chance encounter with Hollywood heartthrob George Clooney on the set of the show. According to Tom Cullen, who plays Lady Mary’s suitor, Viscount Gillingham, Smith was overcome with emotion after Clooney performed the traditional period drama hand kiss. “She collapsed onto the sofa,” Cullen revealed in an interview on the talk show “Lorraine,” as reported by Vanity Fair.
But Clooney’s attentions were not limited to the Dowager Countess alone. Elizabeth McGovern, who plays Lady Grantham, also had her fair share of Clooney’s charm while filming an alternative reality wedding scene with the actor. “It was special for me because there was a scripted kiss, so I was a bit shocked to see his wedding go forward after our professional day together!” McGovern told the Daily Beast. “He’s truly as charming as you’d hope him to be, and smart, and has his heart in the right place. He was kissing everybody that day! But he wasn’t trying it on; it was all scripted.”
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Fans of “Downton Abbey” have long admired Maggie Smith’s portrayal of the Dowager Countess, a character renowned for her acerbic wit and cutting one-liners. But it seems that even the formidable matriarch was no match for the charms of George Clooney. The incident, which occurred during the filming of the show’s fifth season, has become the stuff of legend among the cast and crew.
Clooney, who is known for his humanitarian work as well as his acting career, has long been regarded as one of Hollywood’s most eligible bachelors. In 2014, he married British-Lebanese barrister Amal Alamuddin in a lavish ceremony in Venice, Italy. The couple, who share two children, have become one of Hollywood’s most high-profile power couples.
Despite his A-list status, Clooney has always maintained a down-to-earth demeanor, something that endeared him to the cast and crew of “Downton Abbey.” McGovern, in particular, was effusive in her praise of the actor’s professionalism and charm. “He was so lovely, so wonderful to work with,” she gushed. “It was really a dream come true to have him on the show.”
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For fans of “Downton Abbey,” the encounter between Maggie Smith and George Clooney is just one of many unforgettable moments from the show’s six-season run. The series, which first premiered in 2010, quickly became a global phenomenon, earning critical acclaim and a devoted following around the world. Its success paved the way for a movie adaptation, which was released in 2019 to rave reviews and impressive box office returns.
Despite the show’s popularity, however, its cast and crew have remained humble and gracious, something that has endeared them to fans and colleagues alike. The encounter between Maggie Smith and George Clooney is a testament to the camaraderie and warmth that existed on the set of “Downton Abbey,” and a reminder of the enduring appeal of this beloved period drama.
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In the end, the encounter between Maggie Smith and George Clooney was just one of many memorable moments from the show’s long and storied history. But for those lucky enough to witness it firsthand, it will always be remembered as a special moment of Hollywood magic, a collision of two worlds that left everyone involved star-struck and spellbound. As “Downton Abbey” continues to captivate audiences around the world, it’s clear that its legacy will endure for years to come.