Next month Foxtel premieres BBC/ Starz co-production The White Queen, a 10 episode adaptation of Philippa Gregory’s novel series about three women and their quest for power during the War of the Roses.
But there’s no fast-tracking on this occasion with the series premiering in the UK on June 16 and in the US tomorrow.
The lavish drama is based on Gregory’s The Cousin’s War novels which tell the story from the perspective of three fiercely determined women who laid claim to the English throne: Elizabeth Woodville (The White Queen), Margaret Beaufort (The Red Queen) and Anne Neville (The Kingmaker’s Daughter).
The year is 1464 and England has been at war for nine years battling over who is the rightful King of England – it is a war between two sides of the same family, The House of York and The House of Lancaster.
The House of York’s young and devilishly handsome Edward IV (Max Irons – Red Riding Hood, The Host) is crowned King of England with the help of master manipulator the Earl of Warwick “The Kingmaker” (James Frain – True Blood, The Tudors). But when Edward falls in love and secretly marries a beautiful young widow, the commoner Elizabeth Woodville (Rebecca Ferguson) Warwick’s plan for control over the English throne comes crashing down around him. Frustrated by the new Queen’s influence he will stop at nothing to maintain his grip on the King.
The most beautiful woman in the land, Elizabeth marries for the love of her King, with the help of her mother Jacquetta (Academy and Tony Award nominee Janet McTeer), a self-proclaimed sorceress. Elizabeth’s most fierce adversary is the staunchly loyal Lancastrian Margaret Beaufort (Amanda Hale – The Crimson Petal And The White) – a damaged and highly religious woman who would willingly lay down her life to see her young son Henry Tudor take the throne.
Then there is Anne Neville (Faye Marsay), Lord Warwick’s daughter – a pawn in her father’s battle for control; who finds her strength and ambition when she takes control of her destiny and marries the King’s youngest brother Richard Duke of Gloucester (Aneurin Bernard – Ironclad, We’ll Take Manhattan).
The cast also includes Caroline Goodall (Schindler’s List, The Princess Diaries) as Duchess Cecily, the mother of Edward, and David Oakes (The Borgias, The Pillars of the Earth) as George Duke of Clarence, another of King’s brothers.
8.30pm Thursday September 5th on SoHo.