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Dame Maggie Smith is making some dire predictions about the fate of her character, the scene stealing Dowager Countess, Lady Violet on Downton Abbey.
“She’s got to drop down dead at some point because I must be about 110 logically in the thing.” Smith told the Today Show’s Michelle Kosinski, somewhat tongue and cheek. “So I don’t know what’s going to happen.”
Smith talked about what it’s like to be on the Masterpiece Theatre hit, her tendency to play older characters and how nervous she and director Dustin Hoffman were to work on their new movie Quartet. It opens in wide release today in the states.
In it, Smith plays an aged diva who settles into a retirement home for musicians. At 78 with a prestigious movie and television career under her belt plus many awards, Smith is certainly entitled to the “Diva” moniker. But she didn’t display any haughty behavior during the sit down chat. She was a little self-deprecating.
“I prefer to be somebody else. Selling myself always feels a bit odd,” she told Kosinki.
She also revealed how nervous she gets when shooting her Dowager Countess scenes.
“Inside I’m like a lump of jelly, worried if I don’t get this speech right, I’m done for.”
Her penchant for wanting to get things right is the reason she doesn't even watch Downton when the show airs. She revealed that secret on 60 Minutes last month. She's afraid she will hate how she has said her lines on camera.
You can watch the entire Today Show interview below. We hope Julian Fellowes and his writing crew don’t get any ideas about bumping off our beloved Lady Violet in season 4 after watching this interview. Now that would really hurt!