Regardless of being one of many longest-serving rulers in French historical past, a tv present has by no means centered round Catherine de Medici — till now. The Serpent Queen premieres September 11 on STARZ and follows Catherine’s unbelievable rise to energy by means of any means essential. HollywoodLife spoke EXCLUSIVELY with govt producers Justin Haythe and Erwin Stoff about why Catherine’s story intrigued them.
“To me, I really feel like I’ve by no means seen an antihero like that who occurred to be a girl,” Justin mentioned through the present’s press junket. “We have now nice anti-heroes in tv and movie, and I couldn’t consider one [that was a woman]. She felt extremely fashionable to me. The best way she staged managed her picture, the way in which that she negotiated these challenges, the way in which that she needed to be higher than all the boys round her. All of this felt relatable. She lived on this absurd world that in sure methods feels relatable to our personal, the place more and more the identical individuals win each time it doesn’t matter what. I simply had by no means encountered a personality like her, and I had wished to do a villain from historical past, who we’ve judged as a villain, and provides them their day in courtroom because it had been, their alternative to show to us and say, ‘Hey, you’d have completed what I did as a result of all the nice individuals are already useless.’ That appeared like a very distinctive and enjoyable alternative.”
Erwin added, “To me, her plight very a lot jogged my memory of the plight of ladies on this enterprise once I first got here into it within the ’80s. They need to be higher. They need to be smarter, and so they all the time needed to do it behind a person as a result of no person would truly give them the ability to do it.”
The producers additionally weighed in on why they suppose there’s by no means been a present solely about Catherine de Medici, whose life was stuffed to the brim with made-for-TV materials. “The best way she’s described is unattractive, unroyal, and unable to bear kids, doesn’t pay her dowry. She’s beginning on the backside, and I feel all these issues are within the eye of the beholder,” Justin famous. “You take a look at the work for the interval of that point with the people who find themselves thought of lovely, and to our eye, we predict, wow, okay, that was the wonder customary of the day. This stuff are arbitrary. This stuff are subjective. However she was thought of unfortunate in love. All of these items at some stage aren’t the issues that we often put a body round.”
He continued, “Our tackle the present was which means she needed to be smarter, which means she needed to be able to larger cruelty. She needed to be humorous, or she needed to be wittier. There’s want success right here the place once you’re confronted with challenges, once you’re underestimated, you even have the products to triumph. That’s the story. And I feel that’s why individuals hadn’t gotten to it earlier than.”
The position of Catherine de Medici will probably be performed by two actresses: Liv Hill and Samantha Morton. Justin careworn that it was “important” to start out Catherine’s story when she was a younger woman.
“The method was devising the story saying, okay, how can we inform the story about Catherine the place I feel it’s important to inform how younger she was when she was knocked out of her life and dropped, after which needed to consummate her marriage in entrance of an viewers, together with her uncle. I’ve two youngsters. That’s each teenager’s worst nightmare, proper? She was actually younger. You needed to inform that, however you additionally needed to inform how lengthy Catherine dominated, what number of kids she had, what number of challenges she overcame, what number of kings she outlived, so that you wanted to have two actors play her,” Justin defined.
Regardless of not sharing the display screen collectively, Justin mentioned that Samantha and Liv had a “nice chemistry” with their performances of the identical character. “Liv has a rare poise for any individual so younger, and I feel Samantha has the same poise and energy,” Justin informed HollywoodLife. The Serpent Queen will air Sundays on STARZ.