Judi Dench is set to play Cecily, Duchess of York opposite Benedict Cumberbatch in the title role of The BBC’s upcoming TV adaptation of Shakespeare’s “Richard III”.
The telemovie will be part of the second series of “The Hollow Crown,” following on from 2012’s successful four telemovie adaptations of Shakespeare’s historical plays. That series, starring the likes of Jeremy Irons, Tom Hiddleston and Ben Whishaw, adapted “Richard II,” “Henry IV Part 1,” “Henry IV Part 2” and “Henry V”.
“The Hollow Crown: The Wars of the Roses” will adapt the other famed historical tetralogy of Shakespeare – the three parts of “Henry VI” and “Richard III”. One difference this time out is that the telemovies will be trilogy with “Henry VI” being shrunk from a three-part play into a two-part telemovie.
Tom Sturridge (“On the Road,” “The Boat That Rocked”) has been cast as Henry VI in both parts of that production. He’s joined by Sophie Okonedo (“Hotel Rwanda”) as Queen Margaret across all three films, Keeley Hawes (“Ashes to Ashes”) as Queen Elizabeth in two of them, and Hugh Bonneville (“Downton Abbey”) as Humphrey, Duke of Gloucester in the first ‘Henry’ film.
Neal Street Productions, Carnival Films, and Thirteen are producing the three telemovies which will air on BBC Two. Dominic Cooke will direct all three films based on adapted screenplays from Ben Power.