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'Downton Abbey' special airing in December with a preview of season as well as a look back

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NEW YORK, N.Y. - PBS is setting the table for the "Downton Abbey" feast ahead with a preview special planned for broadcast in December.

PBS' "Masterpiece" says "Return to Downton Abbey" will air Dec. 1 with what's billed as "a tantalizing taste" of the upcoming season, which begins Jan. 5.

It also will look at the series' past three seasons.

Susan Sarandon serves as host for the special, a mix of behind-the-scenes footage, clips of favourite moments and interviews with cast members. Michelle Dockery, Hugh Bonneville, Elizabeth McGovern, Jim Carter and Shirley MacLaine are among the stars who will appear in the special.

"Downton Abbey," the wildly popular drama about British class and culture a century ago, will move into the Roaring Twenties in the new season.

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