It will be a Happy New Year indeed for “Abbey-ites.”
New episodes of “Downton Abbey” will hit the states just after the New Year.
“Downton Abbey’s” upcoming fourth season will premiere in the U.S. on Sunday, January 5, 2014 on PBS, “Masterpiece” executive producer Rebecca Eaton revealed Tuesday. (Season 4 debuts in the U.K. in September.)
The new season will run for eight weeks, through February 23.
The addictive British period drama, which tells the saga of the aristocratic Crawley family and the downstairs staff that serves them, is PBS highest-rated program in its history. In February, the third-season finale — which saw the demise of a beloved main character — drew 8.2 million total viewers to PBS.
The fourth season will see the return of Shirley MacLaine, who plays Cora’s (Elizabeth McGovern) mother, Martha Levinson, as well as the addition of the show’s first black cast member, Gary Carr, who will play a jazz singer.