Perhaps one of Helen Mirren’s most famous roles is as British monarch Queen Elizabeth II. The actress has become somewhat synonymous with fictional retellings of the Queen. So it should really come as no surprise that Helen is set to play yet another famous monarch.
It has been announced that the 72-year-old will be playing the part of Catherine the Great in a new HBO and Sky Atlantic miniseries – aptly named Catherine the Great.
Catherine II was the former Emperor of Russia, and the series will track the end of her reign – including her famous affair with Grigory Potemkin.
The royal, who died in 1796 at age 67, was considered a popular ruler. However, she became famed for her ‘promiscuity’, regularly taking lovers – with one being 40 years her junior.
Speaking about her new role, Helen admitted, “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.”
The show will be aired in the UK next year, on Sky Atlantic, so make sure not to miss it!
(Helen Mirren as Queen Elizabeth II in 2006 film The Queen)
Interestingly, the news that Helen will yet again be taking on the role of a famous royal leader comes soon after she confessed that she was done with playing Queen Elizabeth II.
She has famously played the current British Queen in 2006 film The Queen, and on stage during the theatre production of The Audience. She also played Elizabeth II, in the Channel 4 series Elizabeth I, in 2005.
But when asked whether or not she would ever play the role of the monarch in popular Netflix series, The Crown, she vehemently denied it.
Helen said, “No, I’m not. No, no. I won’t do that.”
Explaining, she said, “It was wonderful that I did it, it was wonderful that it was a success, but I didn’t want the headline, when I’m knocked over by a bus, headline, ‘The Queen knocked over by a bus’.
“So I wanted to kind of get away from that so, I like to move forward, not back.”