rebecca eaton elizabeth mcgovern 'Downton Abbey' Season 3: A birth, a death, 'difficult' Maggie SmithRebecca Eaton (pictured left, with star Elizabeth McGovern), executive producer of “Masterpiece Classic” on PBS, teased some “Downton Abbey” Season 3 tidbits at a party for Central Florida’s new PBS station, WUCF TV. She tells the Orlando Sentinels:

“Matthew and Mary do get married.”

“There are some wonderful scenes between Maggie [Smith] and Shirley MacLaine – Shirley MacLaine being ditsy as ever. And Maggie barely restraining her sneer in having to deal with this American. Maggie Smith is a handful, it’s true. She’s very difficult. She knows her worth, and she’s tricky on the set, but she delivers when the time comes.”

“Somebody will be born, and somebody will die, somebody pretty key in the cast, unfortunately not going to make it. It’s the 1920s now.”

Goodness! We have so many questions, not the least of which is – does it sound to anyone else like Eaton is really slamming actress Maggie Smith? It sounds at first like she’s talking about the Dowager Countess, but using Maggie’s name. But then Eaton says she’s “tricky on the set, but she delivers when the time comes,” which makes us think she wasn’t talking about the character.

Up until that point, it does sound like perhaps she’s talking about the Countess – Lady Violet is a handful, she’s difficult, she knows her worth. Hmmm. Does this lend any credence to the rumors Maggie Smith is being difficult in negotiations to return for Seasons 4 and 5?

Secondly, who do you suppose is going to die? Should we start a “Downton Abbey” death pool? We hope it’s not Lady Violet or Carson, they’re both fairly elderly. Maybe Matthew’s mother – we could lose Cousin Isobel and not cry too much over it.

What do you think, “Downton” fans?

Posted by:Andrea Reiher

TV critic by way of law school, Andrea Reiher enjoys everything from highbrow drama to clever comedy to the best reality TV has to offer. Her TV heroes include CJ Cregg, Spencer Hastings, Diane Lockhart, Juliet O'Hara and Buffy Summers. TV words to live by: "I'm a slayer, ask me how."