Prince William and Duchess Kate Middleton are fans of the hit series "Downton Abbey," according to the stars of the show. While it has taken them some time to get caught up on the series, now in its fourth season, the royal watchers are enjoying every minute of it.
Members of the show appeared on "Watch What Happens Live!" with Andy Cohen this week and spoke about the show's popularity with international fans before revealing that the Prince and Duchess were also fans. Rob James-Collier (Thomas Barrow), Lesley Nicol (Mrs. Patmore), Allen Leech (Tom Branson), and Laura Carmichael (Lady Edith Crawley) all appeared on the show and offered fans behind-the-scenes glimpses at life in the Abbey.
"I was actually at an event last week with Prince William, now the Duke of Cambridge, so yeah – I met him last week, shook his hand," Leech told Cohen. "He actually said, 'I'm a big fan of the show – only now that my wife's had a baby.' Obviously he's now got a lot of down time, so Kate's gone, 'I'm watching this and you're watching it with me.'"
"Downton Abbey" will actually feature a special Christmas episode set at Buckingham Palace this season, where the characters will mingle with royalty. King George V and Queen Mary will be featured as characters. Actors Shirley Maclaine and Paul Giamatti will join the original cast for the special episode, which is new, annual holiday viewing for fans.
Last year the Christmas episode left viewers depressed, with the death of a prominent beloved character. However, this year promises to be quite different and even joyful, with nothing particularly devastating to viewers.
"I am sorry about last year, but what do you do when you have a treasured character who wants to leave?" executive producer Liz Trubridge told Metro. "But we won't do that this time! It is packed full of story and it is without question the biggest episode we have ever done," she said of the Christmas episode. "It is the most spectacular, it's not set at Christmas, and we won't be splitting up the family and the servants this time."