Jessica Brown Findlay swaps Downton for Shakespeare

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Ex-Downton Abbey actress Jessica Brown Findlay has signed up to star alongside Andrew Scott in a new production of Hamlet.

The Jamaica Inn star, who shot to fame as Lady Sybil Crawley, will play Ophelia in the Almeida Theatre production.

 Jessica Brown Findlay (Jon Furniss/AP)
Jessica Brown Findlay (Jon Furniss/AP)

Sherlock star Andrew - who will play Hamlet - and actress Juliet Stevenson (Gertrude) have previously been announced for the play, directed by the Almeida's associate director Robert Icke.

Luke Thompson also joins the cast as Laertes, which opens in February next year at the London theatre.

Andrew Scott (Ian West/PA)
Andrew Scott (Ian West/PA)

Juliet stars in another Almeida play, Mary Stuart, trading roles with Lia Williams as both Elizabeth I and Mary Stuart.

Stage actor Rudi Dharmalingam also joins the cast of Friedrich Schiller's political tragedy, which is due to open in December this year.