Giamatti, who won both an Emmy and a Golden Globe for his performance in HBO miniseries John Adams, will play Harold Levinson, the maverick, playboy brother of Cora and uncle of Mary and Edith. The character is set to appear in the Series 4 finale (that’s Christmas special to you Brits) alongside his mother Martha, played by returning guest star Shirley MacLaine.
Giamatti joins a fairly long list of new cast members and guest stars set to appear in the new season, including Lily James, Gary Carr, Tom Cullen, Nigel Harman, Dame Harriet Walter and more.
Downton executive producer Gareth Neame said that Giamatti's character is "free-spirited" and that Harold and Martha will "upset the Grantham’s apple cart" in the finale. It’s doubtful anybody has any idea what that means, so it’s time to get the speculation wheels turning. What sort of event would bring the Crawleys’ American relatives back across the pond? What do we know – if anything – about Cora’s brother from previous episodes? (Has he been mentioned before?)
And, more importantly, are you excited to see Giamatti on the show?