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'Downton Abbey' casting news: Paul Giamatti will portray an American relative

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Keith Bedford/Reuters

(Read caption) 'Downton Abbey' will feature a guest turn by actor Paul Giamatti.

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Another American is coming to “Downton Abbey.”

The Ides of March” actor Paul Giamatti will be appearing in the smash-hit British drama as Harold Levinson, brother of American countess Cora. The brother character has been discussed during the series by Cora and their mother (Shirley Maclaine), but so far had remained offscreen.

Harold is “free-spirited,” Carnival Films managing director and “Downton” executive producer Gareth Neame said in a statement, and that during the finale of the upcoming season, he and Maclaine will “upset the Granthams’ apple cart.”

“We can't wait to see him work alongside Shirley Maclaine,” Neame said.

“Downton” will be premiering its fourth season in the UK this fall and is scheduled to come to America’s PBS stations in January of 2014.

The show centers on the lives of a British aristocratic family, the Crawleys, and the drama occurring between the family’s servants. So far, the family has weathered World War I and the social upheaval of the 1920s.

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