Why ‘Downton Abbey’ Star Elizabeth McGovern Chose Her Career Over Ex Sean Penn

by Jeremy Spirogis
Elizabeth McGovern and husband Simon Curtis

Elizabeth McGovern is best-known for her function on the sequence Downton Abbey, Cora Crawley, or the Countess of Grantham. What’s not as well-known is her previous with film star Sean Penn. Why did McGovern select her profession in appearing over her former relationship?

Who is ‘Downton Abbey’ solid member Elizabeth McGovern’s husband and what number of kids does she have?

Elizabeth McGovern and husband Simon Curtis
Elizabeth McGovern and her husband Simon Curtis in 2017 | Bruce Glikas/Bruce Glikas/FilmMagic

Downton Abbey star McGovern married to British movie director and producer, Simon Curtis in 1992. McGovern and Curtis, who’re nonetheless collectively, have two daughters named Matilda and Grace.

According to the Independent, McGovern’s skilled profession as an actor started on the American Conservatory Theater in San Francisco. From there, she went to the Juilliard School in New York City, the place she continued to review Drama. While she was there, McGovern was provided an element in her first-ever film half: Ordinary People. The Oscar-winning movie, starring Donald Sutherland, Mary Tyler Moore, and Timothy Hutton, was directed by Robert Redford.

The following 12 months, McGovern earned herself an Academy Award nomination for Best Supporting Actress after showing within the movie Ragtime.

“I was thrilled to be nominated for an Oscar,” the Downton Abbey star informed the Independent, “but there was a part of me that thought, ‘I’m not sure I deserve this yet.’”

McGovern moved on to main roles in films with Hollywood stars like Robert De Niro (who she labored with on Once Upon a Time in America) — in addition to Sean Penn.

Elizabeth McGovern and Sean Penn met on the set of 80s films

McGovern met Penn on the set of Racing with the Moon in 1984 on the age of 22. The two actors fell in love, and determined to get engaged. However, the longer term Downton Abbey star ultimately determined to deal with her profession in theater, and she or he left for New York.

According to McGovern, the connection with Penn was “exhausting.” She hasn’t wasted time reflecting on what may need modified had the couple stayed collectively.

“Another life,” she informed the Independent, laughing. “Another story. I’m very happy with the choices I’ve made.”

Elizabeth McGovern and Simon CurtisElizabeth McGovern and Simon Curtis
Sean Penn and Elizabeth McGovern in publicity portrait for the 1984 movie Racing With The Moon | Paramount/Getty Images

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McGovern selected her theater profession over her ex-fiance

For McGovern, leaving Hollywood felt like the suitable alternative.

“I didn’t think I was throwing a career away,” she informed the Daily Mail in an interview. It wasn’t precisely mainstream for actors on the time, however the Downton Abbey star felt it was proper for her. She informed the publication:

Back then it was virtually extraordinary for a Hollywood actress to need to do theatre as a result of the aspiration was all the time to be a film star, however none of that stuff ever bothered me – I simply wished to do attention-grabbing work. I by no means discovered something about that Hollywood way of life in any manner compelling so to depart it simply appeared the suitable factor to do. I wished to search out out extra about life. Los Angeles is a small place targeted on one factor – films – and I wished to see one thing completely different.

RELATED: These 2 ‘Downton Abbey’ Cast Members Have Been ‘Married’ on 3 Different TV Shows

Overall, her very appearing profession has been a hit; McGovern feels blessed to have made the alternatives she made.

“I think I was the lucky one to do what I did,” she defined.

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