“Downton Abbey” just got a whole lot hunkier. George Clooney will make a cameo on the British period drama next season, according to a report on Thursday by People.
A spokesperson for ITV confirmed that the Oscar winning actor’s scenes have already been shot and that his appearance will happen “around Christmas time.” But don’t expect him to be a permanent fixture at the manor. Clooney will instead appear in a one time special that will air to raise money for the Text Santa charity. The “Ocean’s Eleven” star will play a wedding guest in the charity sketch, which isn’t actually an episode of the regular series.
Details of Clooney’s coveted cameo have been a well guarded secret, Marie Claire revealed a couple of tidbits: Clooney’s character will be American, not British. The actor snuck in and filmed his scenes four months ago. And an ITV rep said it’s definitely just a one off-sketch and Clooney’s character won’t recur.
While his cameo will be set in “Downton’s” Highclere Castle, it won’t be Clooney’s first time visiting the famous piece of Victorian real estate. Earlier this year, the actor reportedly visited the English landmark with fiancé Amal Alamuddin, and rumors have even surfaced that the lovebirds are interested in using the space for their wedding.
In addition to his love for Highclere, Clooney has another connection to “Downton.” He is close friends with Hugh Bonneville, who plays Lord Robert Crawley, on the series. The two men worked together last year on the film “The Monuments Men.”
Clooney joins Shirley MacLaine and Paul Giamatti, and Elizabeth McGovern as the latest American actor to appear on the British TV drama.
The fifth season of “Downton Abbey” will begin airing in the U.S. on Sunday, Jan. 4, 2015 on PBS.