Banijay and Newen today announce filming has commenced on Marie Antoinette, a new original drama for CANAL+ Creation Originale, produced by Banijay Studios France, Capa Drama and Les Gens. The eight-part series will be distributed globally by Banijay Rights.
Created and written by Deborah Davis (The Favourite), Marie Antoinette tells the story of the incredibly modern and avant-garde young queen, played by Emilia Schüle (Ku’damm 56/ 63).
Joining Deborah Davis in writing the epic saga is Louise Ironside (The Split), Avril E. Russell (All on a Summer’s Day) and Chloë Moss (Run Sister Run). The series is directed by Pete Travis (Bloodlands) and Geoffrey Enthoven (Children of Love).
Marie Antoinette produced by Claude Chelli and Aude Albano for Capa Drama, Alban Étienne and Stéphanie Chartreux for Banijay Studios France, and Christophe Toulemonde for Les Gens.
Filming will take place in many prestigious historical places including the Châteaux of Versailles, Vaux-le-Vicomte, Lésigny, Champs, Voisins, and in the emblematic studios of Bry-sur-Marne.
Marie Antoinette was barely 14 years old when she left Austria to marry the Dauphin of France. Growing from a stubborn young princess navigating the rules of the French court under pressure to continue the Bourbon line, to a true fashion icon, she impressed with her natural charisma, and recreated life in Versailles in her image: free, independent and feminist ahead of time. Even with rumours underminding her reputation, the notorious figure would defeat the enemies of the Versailles court with courage and dignity.
François de Brugada, CEO of Banijay France (Banijay Studios France) says: “Marie Antoinette is one of the most iconic figures in French history, and her fearless, fascinating life; with Deborah Davis leading the writing team, will make an undeniably powerful television series. We are ready to enchant viewers with stunning scenery from beautiful locations across France, and illustrate this audacious, controversial character who changed the history of our nation.”
Guillaume Thouret, Managing director of Newen France (CAPA drama) says: “We are very happy to launch a new ambitious production with the partners we already worked with : Marie Antoinette’s era put France at the epicentre of glamour, culture and fashion. The series will gather the highest production values by hiring the very best talents for all key creative roles: Art direction, costumes, sets, photography and obviously an A-list director. ”
Cathy Payne, CEO Banijay Rights says: “The world of Marie Antoinette was complex, from her time as a young princess to the legendary queen we are all familiar with. The all-female writing team, led by Deborah Davis, brings a unique portrayal to her character, drawing out modern feminist comparisions. This, along with talented directors, producers and cast, will create a profound interpretation and visual treat to appeal to global audiences.”
Fabrice de la Patellière, Head of Drama CANAL+ says: “The story of Marie Antoinette is timeless, and her life continues to intrigue and capture the imagination of contemporary viewers. The scripts for this series are compelling, and we have the ideal partners to bring the work of Deborah Davis to life. This is set to be a high-end, decadant drama with epic scale.”