” I do not understand ! Elizabeth McGovern admits she has ‘no idea’ why Downton Abbey is so popular

She is set to reprise her role as Lady Cora Crawley in Downton Abbey: A New Era, the second film following the hit TV series.

But despite having played the Countess of Grantham since 2010 when the historical drama began, Elizabeth McGovern has admitted she has “no idea” why Downton Abbey is so popular.

In a new interview, the 30-year-old American actress also revealed that she felt filming the big-screen version of the saga written by Julian Fellowes was “very similar” to directing the TV series.

Puzzled: Despite having portrayed the Countess of Grantham since 2010 when the historical drama began, Elizabeth McGovern has admitted she has ‘no idea’ why Downton Abbey is so popular

Downton Abbey, which portrayed the lives of the aristocratic Crawley family and their servants, ran for six series and received several awards, including Golden Globes, BAFTAs and Screen Actors Guild awards.

And discussing the world’s love for the show, which has garnered 120 million viewers worldwide, Elizabeth couldn’t fathom its popularity, admitting she “doesn’t get it”.

She said OK! magazine: ‘People ask me why the show has been successful over the years and I have no idea. I don’t understand it. I’m just grateful. But viewers tune into it for different reasons.

Popular: Downton Abbey, which portrayed the lives of the aristocratic Crawley family and their servants, ran for six series and received several awards, including Golden Globes, BAFTAs and Screen Actors Guild awards

Popular: Downton Abbey, which portrayed the lives of the aristocratic Crawley family and their servants, ran for six series and received several awards, including Golden Globes, BAFTAs and Screen Actors Guild awards

Confused: Discussing the world's love for the series, which has garnered 120 million viewers worldwide, Elizabeth couldn't fathom its popularity, admitting she

Confused: Discussing the world’s love for the show, which has 120 million viewers worldwide, Elizabeth couldn’t fathom its popularity, admitting she ‘doesn’t understand it’

Meanwhile, the actress has opened up about the transition from TV series to film, with the star explaining how she initially thought making the film version would be bigger and better.

But she soon discovered there was little difference, explaining: ‘The funny thing is that it looked a lot alike. I thought the snacks on the [film] the whole thing would be better but no… they weren’t. We were in the same house, we stayed in the same small guest rooms around [Highclere Castle].

“The movie looked and felt so much bigger, expansive and more ambitious than the TV show, but the actual act of shooting it is really the same. You still have to hit your marks and say your lines. So that was a little surprising to me.

Review: She said OK!  magazine: 'People ask me why the show has been successful over the years and I have no idea.  I don't understand it.  I'm just grateful.  But viewers tune in for different reasons'

Review: She said OK! magazine: ‘People ask me why the show has been successful over the years and I have no idea. I don’t understand it. I’m just grateful. But viewers tune in for different reasons’

And while she’s enjoyed her time on the show, the Illinois native has sometimes said she finds the English actor’s approach to work quite “foreign” to her, as she noted that it was a “real cultural gap” between the UK and the US.

She added that she believed it had more to do with language than anything else, joking that she sometimes felt like she was “on another planet” among English comedians.

Elsewhere last month Elizabeth admitted she was ‘not in’ her final milestone birthday after turning 60 last July.

Big screen: Meanwhile, the actress opened up about the transition from <a class=TV series to film, with the star explaining how she initially thought making the film version would be bigger and better (shown in a clip from the new film)” class=”blkBorder img-share” style=”max-width:100%” />

Big screen: Meanwhile, the actress opened up about the transition from TV series to film, with the star explaining how she initially thought making the film version would be bigger and better (shown in a clip from the new film)

The Downton Abbey star, who for an interview and filming with Woman & Home showed off her age-defying beauty in a teal satin dress, had no qualms about turning 50 – but didn’t feel the same a decade later, at the age of 60.

Speaking to Lifestyle Monthly magazine, the actress said: “As it got in the way, everything about me was like, ‘No I can’t be 60, I’m not into it! Once I made the leap and with a little help from friends, now I love it.

Candidly revealing that it has been a “difficult two years”, Elizabeth continued: “There are fewer opportunities for a woman my age than a man my age.” This is the reality, but things are changing slowly.

“The conversations over the past two years have been very deep and although the past two years have been difficult, I have great hope for the future.”

Thoughts: While she enjoyed her time on the show, the Illinois native has at times said she found the English actor's approach to work to be enough for her

Thoughts: While she enjoyed her time on the show, the Illinois native has at times said she found the English actor’s approach to work quite “foreign” to her, as she noted that there was a “real cultural gap” between the UK and the US.

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