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Watch: A Shaky Sneak Peek of Shirley MacLaine on ‘Downton Abbey’

Watch: A Shaky Sneak Peek of Shirley MacLaine on 'Downton Abbey'

When TV Land aired the 40th AFI Life Achievement Award to Shirley MacLaine this past Sunday, they offered a hidden gem immediately pounced on by sharp-eyed fans pining for more “Downton Abbey” — a clip from the upcoming third season of the show, which will return (in the UK, at least) in September.

Introduced by Elizabeth McGovern, who plays Cora Crawley, Countess of Grantham on the series, the snippet introduces MacLaine as Martha Levinson, Cora’s mother, and immediately drops her into a duel of polite snippiness with Maggie Smith’s Violet Crawley, Cora’s mother-in-law. The video quality’s not great, but for anyone longing for more “Downton,” it’s worth braving just to see the formidable Violet meet her match.

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