Maggie Smith’s sharp-tongued Dowager Countess has always been the biggest reason to tune into ITV’s “Downton Abbey,” but now she’s moving on.
The 80-year-old Smith tells The Sunday Times that the upcoming sixth season, which airs at the end of this year in the U.K. and early 2016 in the U.S., will be her last turn in the role:
“They say this is the last one, and I can’t see how it could go on. I mean, I certainly can’t keep going. To my knowledge, I must be 110 by now. We’re into the late 1920s.”
Smith’s referring to reports that the sixth season may not only be her last season, but the show’s as well. Both reviews and ratings for the show have slipped in the most recent season.
Despite retiring from the series, Smith has zero plans to quit acting and will continue to work as long as she is able to.