'Downton Abbey' Season 4 'will see Mary ... attempting to move on without the man she loved'
"After three successful series of 'Downton Abbey,' Dan Stevens decided not to renew his contract beyond the initial three years he had been contracted," says creator Julian Fellowes. "We wish him every success for the future. Michelle Dockery will be returning to her role as Lady Mary in series four which begins production in February, 2013.
Over the last three years, audiences across the world have been captivated by the ups and downs of Mary and Matthew's relationship, culminating in their wedding. Fans have enjoyed what has become a solid and loving marriage.
It is for this reason that the Producers decided Matthew and Mary could not simply be estranged or parted, resulting in his untimely and tragic death at the end of the series' finale.
In the next series, alongside all the usual drama, comedy and romance involving the much-loved cast of characters, viewers will see Mary adjusting to her life and attempting to move on without the man she loved."
So there you have it. It's a real shame, though we understand about Stevens wanting to pursue other projects. We hope it's not too painful to watch Lady Mary moving on without her Matthew.