Helen Mirren to Play Catherine the Great in Sky-HBO Drama


Academy Award winner Helen Mirren will star in the new four-part drama Catherine the Great, commissioned by HBO and Sky.

The miniseries delves into the politically tumultuous and sexually charged court of the most powerful female monarch in history. Produced by Origin Pictures and New Pictures, the drama will air on Sky Atlantic and streaming service NOW TV in the U.K. and Ireland next year, and on Sky Atlantic in Italy, Germany, Austria and Spain. It will broadcast on HBO in the U.S. and HBO Canada, through HBO’s output deal with Bell Media.

Written by Nigel Williams (Elizabeth I, Wodehouse in Exile) and directed by Philip Martin (The Crown, Mo, Prime Suspect), Catherine the Great will be executive produced by David M. Thompson (Woman in Gold, Death Comes to Pemberley) for Origin Pictures and Charlie Pattinson (Elizabeth I, The Missing, Skins) for New Pictures, as well as Mirren and Philip Martin. Jules Hussey (Hooten and the Lady) is producing. Sky Vision will handle distribution rights.

Mirren said: “I am very excited by the possibility of embodying a woman from history who grabbed and then wielded great power. She rewrote the rules of governance by a woman, and succeeded to the extent of having the word Great attached to her name, Catherine the Great. I am very grateful to have HBO and Sky as partners in this endeavor. There are no other homes on television that bring the support and understanding needed for this kind of project.”

Catherine the Great is the third Sky and HBO project to be greenlit under a $250 million multi-year co-production investment deal announced last year. The first was Chernobyl and the second is Gangs of London (working title).