Creator Julian Fellowes reveals reasons he is ending ‘Downton Abbey’ [Exclusive Video]

“From about series four, we knew where we wanted to end up with the principle arcs, but lesser stories keep coming in and decorating it,” admits “Downton Abbey” creator Julian Fellowes during our recent webcam interview (watch below). Indeed, the upcoming sixth season will be the last for this award-winning drama series, of which he has written every episode.

Now the executive producer says it is the right time to stop: “Certainly, we didn’t want to go on and on and on and on. We wanted to leave while people were still sorry to see us go. And on that basic principle, (series) six seemed a pretty good number.”

Click here to watch dozens of video chats with 2015 Emmy contenders

The series revolves around the the wealthy Crawley family and their servants living in Yorkshire in the early 20th century. It covers the period leading up to and following World War I with sweeping plots that include major and minor events of those years. The main focus, however, is on the personal lives of those both upstairs and downstairs. 

Over its first four seasons, this “Masterpiece” program has done very well at the Emmys, with 11 wins to date, including wins  in 2011 for Best Movie/Miniseries, Best Movie/Mini Writing (Fellowes), Best Movie/Mini Directing (Brian Percival) and Best Movie/Mini Supporting Actress (Maggie Smith). When the show shifted to Drama for its second season, Smith won the Supporting Actress award and has contended every season since. Other acting nominees have included Hugh Bonneville, Jim Carter, Brendan Coyle, Michelle Dockery, Joanne Froggatt, Paul Giamatti, and Elizabeth McGovern.

Fellowes was already a major awards winner before embarking on “Downton Abbey” with Gareth Neame of Carnival Films. He won the Best Original Screenplay Oscar for the similarly-themed “Gosford Park” (2001). Even though he had claimed that same award from the Writers Guild a few weeks earlier, he still wasn’t sure the Oscar would be his. As he reveals, “When I was nominated, my agent said to me, ‘It’s such a shame you’re in the same category as ‘Memento’.’ After that, all of my friends kept saying, ‘Oh, if only you weren’t up against ‘Memento’.” He went to see the “absolutely fabulous” film by Christopher Nolan and had his loser’s face ready to go for the camera.

Related: An exclusive sneak peek at the PBS ‘Masterpiece’ Emmy campaign

Make your predictions and you could win a place of honor on our leaderboard, a starring role in next year’s Top 24 Users (the two dozen folks who do the best predicting this year’s Emmys line-up), and one of three contest prizes: $500 for first place, $300 for second place, and $200 for third place. Prizes will be bestowed as gift certificates to be redeemed at Amazon. See our contest rules for more info.

Average Gold Derby users just like YOU often turn out to be our smartest prognosticators, so it’s important that you give us your predictions. Your picks influence our User racetrack odds, which also factor into our official combined odds.

The Top 24 Users did the best at predicting last year’s Emmy nominations (78.55%) when competing against Gold Derby’s Editors (77.68%), all Users (74.78%) and the Experts (74.64%). Which group will be victorious this year?

Register/log in to your account (or create an account with one click using Facebook, Twitter, or Google) so you can compete to predict the Emmy Awards, “Game of Thrones,” reality shows and more.

More News from GoldDerby