Did you really think Queen Elizabeth II would have all the TV fun? Starz is getting into the royal drama game with Becoming Elizabeth, a new series about Queen Elizabeth I when she was just Elizabeth Tudor, the future Queen of England.
The new series received a straight-to-series order of eight episodes. Anya Reiss will serve as head writer and executive producer on the show that will feature an all-female writing staff. George Ormond and George Farber are also executive producers.
“The world of Becoming Elizabeth is visceral and dangerous — judgments are rendered quickly and no one is safe,” Jeffrey A. Hirsch, CEO of Starz, said in a statement. “This series explores the Tudor Reign and young Elizabeth, who would become England’s ‘Gloriana’ and one of history’s most dynamic figures, through a new lens which we think viewers will find highly engaging.”
Expect the series to follow a teenaged Elizabeth before she ascended to the throne as the English court is thrown into disarray following the death of King Henry the VIII. In the show, the king’s surviving children find themselves as pawns in a game between the elite and powerful as vying for control of England.
“Elizabeth struggles to control her own destiny and take real power as the men around her attempt to claim her sovereignty. Her fascinating and factual journey to secure the crown is filled with scheming, betrayal and illicit relationships that threaten to bring forth her demise at a time in which every man or woman of the court is on the wheel of fortune, which may take them to a position of great power one moment, or the executioner’s block the next,” Starz said in a press release.
“Drama seems to skip straight from Henry VIII’s turnstile of wives to an adult white faced Gloriana. Missing out boy kings, religious fanatics, secret affairs and a young orphaned teenager trying to save herself from the vicious scramble to the top,” Reiss said in a statement. “I should have found it hard to relate to 500-year-old royalty but Elizabeth lived in dangerous, polarizing times and often made terrible hormone-fuelled decisions. I’ve found writing her story a thrilling experience.”
Queen Elizabeth I has been the subject of many flicks and miniseries. Margot Robbie recently played her in Mary Queen of Scots, Judi Dench played her in Shakespeare in Love, Cate Blanchett in Elizabeth and Elizabeth: The Golden Age, Helen Mirren in Elizabeth I, Rachel Skarsten in Reign and Emma Thompson in Upstart Crow. Meanwhile, Queen Elizabeth II and her time on the throne is the subject of Netflix’s Emmy-winning The Crown. Claire Foy and Olivia Colman have played the monarch in the Netflix series.
No premiere date for Becoming Elizabeth has been announced.