Kate Middleton Surprised the 'Downton Abbey' Stars During a Visit to Set

Michelle Dockery reminisces about the time the duchess graced the Downton cast with her royal presence.

  • Downton Abbey star Michelle Dockery looked back at the time Kate Middleton visited the set of the beloved drama during yesterday's episode of The Tonight Show.
  • Dockery said the Duchess of Cambridge was charming, gracious, beautiful, and "mesmerizing" during her visit.
  • The Downton Abbey movie hits theaters this Friday, September 20.

The upcoming Downton Abbey movie revolves around the king and queen's visit to the titular estate, but the cast also got a real-life royal visit of their own. Back in 2015, Kate Middleton stopped by the set of the beloved British drama at London's Ealing Studios. Four years might've passed since then, but actress Michelle Dockery, who stars as Lady Mary in the series and film, still holds the memories dear.

The Duchess Of Cambridge Visits The Set Of Downton Abbey At Ealing Studios

'Kate Middleton poses with the cast of ’Downton Abbey’ during a set visit in 2015

(Image credit: Chris Jackson)

"I sort of felt like probably what it felt like for a court jester back in the day, performing for the royals," she joked on The Tonight Show Starring Jimmy Fallon last night. "So we were quite nervous. But she was just, of course, so charming, gracious, and beautiful, and she was mesmerizing and it was such a special time for everyone."

Duchess Kate and her husband, Prince William, are known to be big Downton fans. The Duke of Cambridge called it "one of Catherine's and my favorite programs" in a tribute to the show hosted by the British Academy of Film and Television Arts.

The Duchess Of Cambridge Visits The Set Of Downton Abbey At Ealing Studios

(Image credit: Chris Jackson)

The Duchess Of Cambridge Visits The Set Of Downton Abbey At Ealing Studios

(Image credit: Chris Jackson)

Dockery's co-star Laura Carmichael, who portrays Lady Edith, previously gushed over the duchess' visit to set. "We all got quite shy and she was sort of leading the conversation," she said, according to E! News. "It was lovely. She's so normal. I know everyone says that but she really does try to make everyone feel at ease."

Is it too much to hope for a Kate cameo in the Downton film? The movie arrives to theaters this Friday, September 20.

The Downton Abbey Cast Hits the Red Carpet for the Movie's World Premiere

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Erica Gonzales

Erica Gonzales is the Senior Culture Editor at ELLE.com, where she oversees coverage on TV, movies, music, books, and more. She was previously an editor at HarpersBAZAAR.com. There is a 75 percent chance she's listening to Lorde right now.