Actors

The Best Downton Abbey Actors  

Ranker TV
289 votes 43 voters 21 items

List Rules Only main and supporting cast members - no guest stars. Vote based on their performances on Downton Abbey.

While you might assume that the Downton Abbey cast would be swimming in awards, surprisingly this hasn't always been the case. While some of the Downton Abbey actors have indeed won a slew of awards including Oscar nominations and most have received shared SAG Awards for Best Ensemble cast, not all of them have racked in many more. Some of the actors playing your favorite Downton Abbey characters have gotten random festival awards but not a lot else, despite being incredible actors. That's why you'll have a chance to vote on the best actors on Downton Abbey regardless of how many awards they may or may not have received. 

Just vote for your favorite Downton Abbey actor or actress on the list of cast members below in order to help discover the internet's picks for the best actors on the historical family drama series. Next, to each, you'll also find a list of the awards they've received so you can be appropriately appeased or outraged. 

 

Maggie Smith is listed (or ranked) 1 on the list The Best Downton Abbey Actors
Photo: Featureflash Photo Agency/Shutterstock
1 22 VOTES

Golden Globes
Best Performance by an Actress in a Supporting Role in a Series, Miniseries or Motion Picture Made for Television (2012, 2013- Win)

Primetime Emmy Awards
Outstanding Supporting Actress in a Drama Series (2012- Win, 2013, 2014, 2016- Win)
Outstanding Supporting Actress in a Miniseries or Movie​​​​​​​ (2011- Win)

Dame Margaret Natalie Smith, CH, DBE is an English actress. She made her stage debut in 1952 and has had an extensive, varied career in stage, film and television spanning over sixty years. Smith has appeared in over 50 films and is one of Britain's most recognisable actresses. She was appointed Dame Commander of the Order of the British Empire in the 1990 New Year Honours for services to the performing arts, and Member of the Order of the Companions of Honour in the 2014 Birthday Honours for services to drama. Smith began her career on stage at the Oxford Playhouse in 1952 and made her Broadway debut in New Faces of '56. For her work on the London stage, she has won a record five Best ...more on Wikipedia

Characters: Violet Crawley, Dowager Countess of Grantham

Age: 84

Birthplace: Ilford, London, United Kingdom

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Jim Carter is listed (or ranked) 2 on the list The Best Downton Abbey Actors
Photo: via Reddit
2 20 VOTES

Primetime Emmy Awards
Outstanding Supporting Actor in a Drama Series (2012, 2013, 2014, 2015)

Online Film & Television Association
Best Supporting Actor in a Drama Series (2015, 2016)

Screen Actors Guild Awards
Outstanding Performance by an Ensemble in a Drama Series (2013- Win, 2014, 2015- Win, 2016- Win, 2017)

 

Jim Carter is an English actor. Carter's film credits include Top Secret!, A Month in the Country, A Dangerous Man: Lawrence After Arabia, The Madness of King George, Richard III, Brassed Off, Shakespeare in Love, The Little Vampire, Ella Enchanted, and Detective Victor Getz in The Thief Lord. He plays John Faa in The Golden Compass, the first film in the adaptation of the His Dark Materials trilogy, and also stars in House of 9 as The Watcher, and the executioner in Alice in Wonderland. His television credits include Lipstick on Your Collar, Cracker, The Way We Live Now, The Singing Detective, Arabian Nights, The Chest, Red Riding, A Very British Coup and the Hornblower episode "Duty" and ...more on Wikipedia

Characters: Charles Carson

Age: 70

Birthplace: Harrogate, United Kingdom

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Michelle Dockery is listed (or ranked) 3 on the list The Best Downton Abbey Actors
Photo:  Kevin Winter/Getty images
3 17 VOTES

Golden Globes
Best Performance by an Actress in a Television Series - Drama (2013) 

Primetime Emmys
Outstanding Lead Actress in a Drama Series (2012, 2013, 2014) 

Screen Actors Guild Awards
Outstanding Performance by an Ensemble in a Drama Series (2013- Win, 2014, 2015- Win, 2016- Win, 2017)

Michelle Suzanne Dockery is an English actress and singer. She is best known for her role as Lady Mary Crawley in the ITV drama series Downton Abbey, for which she has been nominated for three consecutive Emmy Awards and a Golden Globe Award. Dockery made her professional stage debut in His Dark Materials in 2004. For her role as Eliza Doolittle in the 2007 London revival of Pygmalion, she was nominated for the Evening Standard Award. For her role in the 2009 play Burnt by the Sun, she earned an Olivier Award nomination for Best Supporting Actress. Her other notable stage credits include Pillars of the Community and Hamlet. She has also appeared in the films Hanna, Anna Karenina and ...more on Wikipedia

Characters: Lady Mary Crawley

Age: 37

Birthplace: Romford, London, England

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Brendan Coyle is listed (or ranked) 4 on the list The Best Downton Abbey Actors
Photo: Metaweb (FB)/Fair use
4 19 VOTES

Primetime Emmy Awards
Outstanding Supporting Actor in a Drama Series (2012)

BAFTA TV Awards
Best Supporting Actor (2011) 

Screen Actors Guild Awards
Outstanding Performance by an Ensemble in a Drama Series (2013- Win, 2014, 2015- Win, 2016- Win, 2017)

Brendan Coyle is an English actor. He is well known to television audiences for playing Nicholas Higgins in the miniseries North & South, Robert Timmins in the first three series of Lark Rise to Candleford, and John Bates, the valet, in Downton Abbey. The last role earned him a nomination for a Primetime Emmy Award for Outstanding Supporting Actor in a Drama Series and a BAFTA nomination for Best Supporting Actor. ...more on Wikipedia

Characters: John Bates

Age: 55

Birthplace: Corby, United Kingdom

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