Sadly, it doesn’t look like it. Lily James wasn’t part of the cast announcement which included new additions like Hugh Dancy, Laura Haddock, Nathalie Bay, and Dominic West, per Elle. Of course, the original principal cast is also returning, including the likes of Hugh Boneville, Laura Carmichael, Jim Carter, Brendan Coyle, Maggie Smith, and Joanne Froggatt — but not James.
It seems that this is mainly down to scheduling, as James has been pretty busy as of late. She’s got two films in the works including “What’s Love Got to Do With It?” starring Emma Thompson, Shazad Latif, and Nikkita Chadha, as well as another film in the pipeline, “The Paris Trap” (via IMDb). She’s also starring in the Hulu series “Pam & Tommy,” in which she plays the “Baywatch” bombshell Pamela Anderson (via YouTube).
But there’s always the possibility that James could return to “Downton” in the future, as its creator Julian Fellowes has teased a third film. Speaking about the cast, Fellowes told Radio Times (via Yahoo! News), “They say goodbye, everyone cries and two years later, we’re back at it!” Fellowes went on to say that he thinks “each time it’s goodbye, but whether it is or not, who knows?”