Although the first season has yet to air, E!’s buzziest new drama, The Royals, has already been renewed for a second season. Starring Elizabeth Hurley as the Queen and guest-starring Joan Collins as the fictional Grand Duchess of Oxford, the network announced the renewal of the series ahead of its long-awaited premiere on Sunday, March 15th.
Just like the real Royal Family, the show features a beautiful brunette at its forefront (à la the Duchess of Cambridge) and takes place in contemporary London - but any similarities between the hour-long drama and the British monarchy appear to end there.
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In this fictional and racy interpretation of royal life, Elizabeth plays Queen Helena, a “couture-clad vixen dripping in diamonds” who struggles to keep her morally corrupt family in the public's good graces.
The plot centres on the Queen's failing marriage with King Simon and her clashes with her son, Prince Liam (played by William Moseley) over his new American girlfriend, Ophelia, who is played by Canadian actress Merritt Patterson. If all that weren’t dramatic enough, the youngest member of the royal clan, Princess Eleanor, is a headline-grabbing party-girl with a boozy streak.
Created by the same executive producers who brought us One Tree Hill, The Royals is E!'s first fully scripted show. They've previously hosted successful talk shows like Hello Ross! and reality shows like Keeping Up With the Kardashians.
“The Royals will offer a fictional look behind the very public gilded facade of the palace gates to imagine the private, lush, fun, sexy world of the most-watched celebrity family on the planet,” promised Jeff Olde, E!’s executive VP of original programming and development.
The show is set to premiere on March 15 at 10 pm EST.