I don’t feel sorry for you Dan Stevens, aka Matthew Crawley, aka Love of My Life, if you are leaving Downton Abbey for Hollywood.
You know, Cousin Matthew? I thought you were different. You’ve been to war. You wear old-fashioned wool suits without any of that fancy Armani silk lining between your skin and that rough woolen suit. You know how to court a girl and kiss her at the formal dining table. I thought you were a man.
But now? Rumor has it you are leaving the foggy turn of the century English moors for a hopes of a career in shiny present day Hollywood after the third season of Downton Abbey. I’ve never been so heartbroken. You might as well be wearing an ironic T-shirt and Chuck Taylors. (Okay I’d love you in that too.)
Dearest Matthew, I am writing this with gloved fingers and a hair comb in my tresses trying to get through to you. You are needed at Downton. Lady Mary needs you. Cousin Isabel needs you. The End Tail needs you — whatever that is, it seems to be a powerful thing that people have strong feelings about. You can’t turn your back on Downton. And if you make this decision to leave Downton Abbey, I don’t feel sorry for you because it’s the worst decision you could make.
Do you even know what 21st Century Hollywood has in store for you? Me either, but I could venture a guess.
You get to Hollywood and in a few weeks you land a role to play Chris O’Donnell’s younger brother on a 3-episode arc of NCIS: Los Angeles. Fine. That’s sound casting. But then what? That crooked smile and mop of Jonathan Taylor Thomas hair will be desperately undervalued and underutilized. You’ll be one of many handsome men, many of whom had a jaw bone long before last year! And you know it pains me to point that out to you because I think you’re utterly perfect. But it’s true! You’ll get sick of the traffic and never go to the beach and you might even do drugs.
But if you stay at Downton? Well, there’s teas and charity concerts and sitting in the drawing room and standing in the drawing room and using old-timey telephones to be had. There’s warming up by the fire, there’s written correspondence, there’s feeling the crisp breeze ruffle your hair during an early morning hunt. And there’s being a GD star!!
Look, I want you to succeed. It’s best for our future together that you are happy and fulfilled in your career. So here’s a solution. Keep working at Downton until you are cast in the Hollywood role of a lifetime: to star in the yet-to-be-written-only-existing-in-my-head sequel to Love Actually, Love Actually Revolution.
And the good news is, you can film Love Actually Revolution and Downton Abbey simultaneously because LAR actually takes place at the Downton Estate! In Love Actually Revolution, the characters in each storyline rent a different room at the same bucolic English estate, only to have their lives intersect in fun and moving ways. It ends with a big Christmas dinner where love and laughter ensue!
How much fun would that be to work simultaneously with Colin Firth and with Hugh Bonneville? You’d be all, “Colin! You look like the man whose estate I’m going to take over!” And then you’d be all, “Lord Grantham, how is Miss Bridget Jones doing anyway? Please do let her know I asked after her!” And the next thing you knew we’d be rolling down the leaf-littered hills of northern England, ending up in a pile right next to the picnic you packed for us! (Okay. I skipped a few steps to get there.)
Sure, this plan hinges on a few unknowns, but it’s best for everyone. Because I simply cannot let you leave Downton for good. You can’t tell because this is a written correspondence, but I’m speaking in an English accent right now to let you know the severity of this matter. Don’t do this, Matthew. You’ve left so many times already. Don’t make us go kiss you good-bye on the train platform and press a too-large-to-realistically-take-to-war luck charm into your hands. Don’t make us do that, Cousin Matthew. Please.
(Photo: The Angst Report)