AceShowbiz - George Clooney takes over "Downton Abbey" in a skit filmed for the ITV television fundraiser event, "Text Santa". The spoof video opens with Hugh Bonneville's Robert Crawley learning that he lost his fortune again.
He wishes that he'd never been born and Joanna Lumley appears as an angel to show him what life would've been without him. Jeremy Piven appears as his "Mr. Selfridge" character, bringing undergarments from his store for the ladies. Even worse, the servants downstairs are playing poker.
Mr. Crawley is curious to find out who the Earl of Grantham is in this alternate world, and it turns out the the Marquis of Hollywood (Clooney) is his replacement. The ladies are apparently smitten with him, as the Dowager Countess drops to the floor after he kissed her hand.
The sketch also pokes fun at the show, revealing that Thomas' terrible behavior to sneak and listen to others' conversations is part of his contractual obligations as a footman. Tom thinks he doesn't fit in upstairs or downstairs, but Mary listens to his concern half-heartedly and tells him to clean the car.
When Mr. Crawley asks how his daughters could exist if he doesn't, the series creator Julian Fellowes appears to say, "Don't worry about that. Nobody cares." Crawley argues, "But if someone eats a grapefruit with the wrong spoon, you go berserk," and Fellowes responds, "Well, yes. But that's cutlery."
The Christmas sketch, which was filmed as part of ITV's "Text Santa" television fundraiser event, aired December 19 in the U.K.