As far as historical figures go, Anne Boleyn gets a pretty bad rap. Like the Regina George of the 1500s, the royal court rumour mill ran wild with whispers of her treasonous affairs. A sex-crazed man-eater, a jealous girlfriend, a backstabbing liar, she was the Queen everyone loved to hate until Henry VIII yelled ‘off with her head’.
So, Channel 5 knew just how to hook us in when they announced their latest show based on Anne Boleyn’s life. Starring Queen & Slim actress Jodie Turner-Smith, the psychological thriller series seriously couldn’t be further from a stuffy period piece. Here’s what we know so far about the hottest royal drama since The Crown…
Is there a trailer for Anne Boleyn?
Channel 5 dropped the first trailer for Anne Boleyn on 14th May 2021, and it looks tense af. "You may know the history, but you don’t know her story," the caption read. The trailer looks at Anne and Henry VIII's complex relationship, hinting at an affair for him and accusations of treason against her. Ooh it's good.
What’s Anne Boleyn about?
Based on Anne Boleyn’s final months in the royal Tudor court, the new thriller imagines the panic and prejudice Henry VIII’s second wife (Jodie Turner-Smith) battles when she’s unable to produce a male heir to the English throne.
As popularity fades and allies abandon her, Anne fights to keep her only child Elizabeth safe. Told across three episodes, we follow the brave Queen as she challenges patriarchal norms and finally accepts her fate with pride.
Who stars in Anne Boleyn?
THE Jodie Turner-Smith stars in the lead role, and after months of hype we've just had our first look images of her as Anne Boleyn, and I think we can all agree she looks incredible. Alongside Turner-Smith, the series will feature a whole host of TV’s brightest stars. Paapa Essiedu who was praised in the much-acclaimed BBC series I May Destroy You as well as the action-crime show Gangs of London, will share the screen with Turner-Smith in the drama.
Steering firmly towards the thriller genre, the series will also feature Amanda Burton (White House Farm), as well as Thalissa Teixeira (Two Weeks to Live), Barry Ward (White Lines) and Jamael Westman (Hamilton).
Told from a refreshing female-first point of view, the script is written by Eve Hedderwick Turner, who you might remember from Tim Burton’s Alice Through the Looking Glass.
“I am so excited to join these exciting filmmakers in bringing the story of one of history’s most controversial queens to the screen. Delving deeper into Anne Boleyn’s immense strengths while examining her fatal weaknesses and vulnerabilities, Eve’s scripts immediately captured my imagination,” Turner-Smith told Deadline.
When is Anne Boleyn going to be released?
When the trailer dropped in mid-May, Channel 5 teased the show would be coming "later this month". The series wrapped production on location in Yorkshire in December 2020.
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