Channel Four is to make a five-part drama series about the Queen which will cover “pivotal” moments in the monarch’s life. Each of the five parts will see a different actress take on the role of the Queen with Samantha Bond and Lisa Dillon confirmed as two of the five actresses.
Channel Four has commissioned a five-part drama series about the Queen and pivotal moments in her reign. The first part will be set in 1955 and will deal with Princess Margaret’s decision over whether or not to marry Peter Townsend. The second installment of the drama series will jump forward to 1974 and the attempt to kidnap Princess Anne, the Queen’s daughter. The third part will then leap to 1986 and explore the tensions between the Monarch and Margaret Thatcher when the Prime Minister came into opposition with the Queen over the Commonwealth and South Africa. The fourth episode will be go to 1992 and deal with the separations of Princess Diana and Charles, Prince Andrew and Sarah Ferguson and the fire at Windsor Castle. Finally the fifth episode will then leap forward to 2005 and the marriage of Princes Charles to Camilla Parker-Bowles.
Each of the five parts will see a different actress portray the Queen with Lisa Dillion, who appeared in BBC One’s critically acclaimed Cranford, will take on the role of the Young Queen in the first part of the drama series. Samantha Bond, best known for her role as Miss Moneypenny in several James Bond films, will also play the Queen in one episode. Most recently the actress guest-starred in two episodes of Children’s drama series The Sarah Jane Adventures, having already appeared in the series’ pilot episode in 2007. Other actors to appear in the series include Katie McGrath as a young Princess Margaret. The actress played the Lady Morgana in BBC One’s popular Saturday night fantasy series Merlin and also had a role in Showtime’s The Tudors.
The drama series will be entitled The Queen, sharing the name with the ITV film which starred Helen Mirren, and will not cover the events of Princess Diana’s death in 1997 because they were covered in the film. The drama will air over the summer on Channel Four and will also air in the highly competitive 9pm slot. American broadcaster ABC has already snapped up the rights to show the drama in America.
The Queen is being made by independent production company Blast Films! and will be executive-produced by Ed Coulthard, Grant McKee and Leonie Jameson. The docudrama was commissioned by Channel 4 head of documentaries, Hamish Mykura