The Oscar winner steals every scene as Downton Abbey's Dowager Countess

By K.c. Blumm
August 22, 2014 05:45 PM
PBS

If there were an Emmy Award for scene stealing, Maggie Smith would win it every time.

Whether she’s delivering lines with deadly precision or arching an eyebrow to withering effect, it’s obvious why Dame Maggie has won a Golden Globe, two Screen Actors Guild awards and two Emmys for playing Lady Violet, the Dowager Countess, on Downton Abbey.

Smith, 79, nominated again this year as outstanding supporting actress in a drama series, is “the Queen of the Double Take,” says costar Jim Carter, who is also nominated for an Emmy this year for playing Mr. Carson.

From sparring with Shirley MacLaine to using a swivel chair to comedic effect, the 79-year-old is “funny to her fingertips,” adds Carter.

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