Yes, Matthew Crawley is still alive. That is, actor Dan Stevens has survived his fatal car crash in the final episode of “Downton Abbey” season three. He would have been mobbed at the posh Four Seasons restaurant last night during the New York Observer’s 25th anniversary party. Would have, except Stevens– now living in Brooklyn and filming Scott Frank’s “A Walk Among the Tombstones” with Liam Neeson, arrived sporting an entirely new look. He’s lost maybe 10 or 15 pounds. His hair, dyed blonde for the hit British drama, is now dark, dark brown. And spiky. He seems a little gaunt compared to fleshy hail-fellow-well-met Matthew. But Matthew is no more.
“I asked for extra blood in that final scene,” the absolutely charming Stevens told me. “I wanted to make sure people knew Matthew was dead. There was no question.”
Stevens spent last fall and this winter on Broadway with Jessica Chastain in “The Heiress.” He knew when he arrived on Broadway he was not returning to the Crawley family. In the UK, fans found out on Christmas Day that Matthew was finito. Americans only learned the sad, shocking truth in the last few weeks. Stevens told me had to leave. “I knew I had to try and get into movies,” he told me. But he loved the cast and Julian Fellows. Did they joke around on set? “We did. Mostly it was with Allen Leech, who plays Branson. And Penelope Wilton– I was so lucky to have her as my mother.”
For most of the night at the Observer party, Stevens went unnoticed. He hung out with fellow Brits Tom Hooper (director of Les Miserables and The King’s Speech) and writer Amanda Foreman and her husband.
In the background, the famous and infamous came and went: Mike Bloomberg, Harvey Weinstein, Donald and Melania Trump– Donald is the father in law of Observer owner Jared Kushner who is the husband of lovely Ivanka, as well as Christine Baranski, Katie Holmes, Katie Couric, Dan Abrams, Alexa Ray Joel, Ken Auletta, longest Observer editor Peter Kaplan, original owner Arthur Carter, Spike Lee and Tonya Lee, Newark mayor Cory Booker, producer Linda Yellen, Hearst chief David Carey, and Facebook-Napster founder Sean Parker.
There was no sign of one time Observer editor Graydon Carter. Totally MIA after agreeing to be a co-host: Matt Lauer. But there was a troika of “broadcast chicks”– CNN’s hotter than hot Ashley Banfield, Fox News’s popular Jamie Colby and Kimberly Guilfoyle.
all pictures c2013 Showbiz411 all rights reserved.