Dame Maggie Smith may be recognised for her roles in Downton Abbey and Harry Potter, but in a previous interview with ES Magazine in 2019, the actress surprised fans by admitting that she didn't find her two iconic characters, Violet Crawley and Professor McGonagall, "satisfying".
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"I am deeply grateful for the work in Potter and indeed Downton but it wasn’t what you’d call satisfying. I didn't really feel I was acting in those things," she said.
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Maggie also opened up about her career, admitting that she never went to the theatre as a youngster and didn't know how she decided she wanted to be an actress.
She said: "Honest to God, I have no idea where the urge came from. It was such a ghastly time and we didn’t go to the theatre. I got into terrible trouble once because the neighbours took me to the cinema on a Sunday. But I had a wonderful teacher, Dorothy Bartholomew, who also taught Miriam Margolyes, and who encouraged me."
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Dame Maggie opened up about the role
The national treasure is set to reprise her role as Violet Crawley in the upcoming sequel movie for Downton Abbey, titled A New Era. However, the actress did previously admit she didn't think she'd be making an appearance in the movies at all.
Speaking previously on The Graham Norton Show, she quipped: "No, because honestly, she was about - by the time we're through - she must've been 110. So, I couldn't go on and on and on. I couldn't. It just didn't make sense."
The actress plays the iconic role of Violet Crawley
She added: "I was firmly convinced it would start with the funeral. I could croak it and it would just start with the body." Speaking about how Downton changed her life, she explained: "I led a perfectly normal life until Downton Abbey. I'm not kidding. I'd go to theatres, I'd go to galleries, things like that on my own. And now I can't and that's awful. The Fulham Road's dodgy!"
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