Starz's Next Royal Drama Becoming Elizabeth Will Tell the Story of a Teenage Elizabeth I

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Photo credit: Starz
Photo credit: Starz

Elizabeth I's life is hardly unexamined on film. From Dame Judy Dench's Oscar-winning performance as the Tudor-era royal in Shakespeare in Love to Margot Robbie's depiction of the historical monarch in 2018's Mary Queen on Scots, Lizzie's seen her fair share of screen time. But a forthcoming series from Starz hopes to offer a new perspective on the so-called Virgin Queen.

Aptly titled Becoming Elizabeth, the show will imagine Elizabeth I's teenage years during which she "becomes embroiled in the political and sexual politics of the English court on her journey to secure the crown," per Deadline.

Here's everything we know so far.

A German actress will portray the Queen this time.

Alicia von Rittberg, who is know for the 2014 World War II film Fury, will play the iconic ruler.

Romola Garai (Atonement, The Miniaturist) will play the future Queen Mary I, and Jessica Raine (Call the Midwife) will play Catherine Parr. Tom Cullen, Bella Ramsey, Oliver Zetterström, John Heffernan, Jamie Parker, Jamie Blackley, Jacob Avery, Alexandra Gilbreath, Olivier Huband, Alex Macqueen, Ekow Quartey, and Leo Bill round out the cast announced thus far.

The series, which was created by playwright Anya Reiss, serves as a coming-of-age story for Queen Elizabeth.

Reiss will serve as an executive producer on the project as will George Ormond and George Faber. Deadline also notes that the show will have an all-women writing team, which, in addition to Reiss, will include Emily Ballou, Anna Jordan, and Suhayla El- Bushra.

Becoming Elizabeth fits right in to Starz's current lineup.

Between Outlander and The Spanish Princess, women-centric period dramas have been a core component of Starz's programming lineup in recent years. In September 2020, Starz President and CEO Jeff Hirsch revealed that targeting women was core to their business plan.

"We saw as we got more of our data capability that women are really driving our business. Women and African-American women, and we know it's working. We see it in the explosive growth of our OTT service," he said, per the Hollywood Reporter.

A release date has yet to be set.

Watch this space. We'll update as soon as we know more.

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