'Downton Abbey': Dan Stevens not returning for Season 4?

dan-stevens-downton-abbey-rumor-has-it.jpgOn the heels of good news about "Downton Abbey" -- its pickup for a fourth season -- comes some potentially bad news: According to a report, one of the show's core cast members may not return.

The report comes from U.K. tabloid the Sunday Express, so take it with as big a grain of salt as you wish. But it quotes a "well-placed production source" on "Downton Abbey" as saying, " Dan Stevens isn't returning to the series. He will probably do the first episode of the fourth series, but that will be it."

(The Express story also contains some spoilers for Season 3, which has already aired overseas. Be forewarned if you click through.)

Stevens is currently starring on Broadway in "The Heiress" opposite Jessica Chastain and David Strathairn. The play is scheduled to end its run in February, right around the time "Downton Abbey" begins filming Season 4.

Season 3 of "Downton Abbey" premieres on PBS on Jan. 6. 
Photo/Video credit: PBS