Elizabeth R

Elizabeth R

Glenda Jackson as Elizabeth I
Genre Drama
Starring Glenda Jackson
Ronald Hines
Stephen Murray
Robert Hardy
Country of origin United Kingdom
Original language(s) English
No. of seasons 1
No. of episodes 6
Running time 85 minutes
Original network BBC 2
Original release 17 February – 24 March 1971

Elizabeth R is a BBC television drama serial of six 85-minute plays starring Glenda Jackson in the title role. It was first broadcast on BBC2 from February to March 1971, through the Australian Broadcasting Corporation in Australia and broadcast in America on PBS's Masterpiece Theatre.



The production was filmed at a variety of locations including Penshurst Place which doubled as the queen's castle grounds and Chiddingstone in Kent.[1]

The first episode was broadcast on 19 February 1971, beginning on screen in the year 1549 with the then Princess Elizabeth's difficult ascent to the throne of England nine years later. The final episode was shown on 24 March, the 368th anniversary of the Queen's death.

The series followed the successful Six Wives of Henry VIII (1970) with several performers, Bernard Hepton as Cranmer, Basil Dignam as Bishop Gardiner, John Ronane as Thomas Seymour, and Rosalie Crutchley as Catherine Parr, reprising their roles in Elizabeth R (all in the first episode) from the earlier series.

In February 1972, Elizabeth R first aired in the United States on Masterpiece Theatre which was hosted by Alistair Cooke on PBS. In the summer of 1972, it was rebroadcast with commercials on the New York local station WOR-TV Channel 9.

Glenda Jackson's performance in the title role won her two Emmy Awards - for Best Actress in a Drama Series and Best Actress in a Movie/TV Special (for the episode "Shadow in the Sun"). The series itself won the Emmy for the Best Dramatic Series in 1972 (the first British TV series ever to win the American TV award, before Upstairs, Downstairs carried the award two years later). At around the same time, Jackson also played the part of Elizabeth in the film Mary, Queen of Scots (1971).

Costume designer Elizabeth Waller recreated many of the historical Elizabeth's actual gowns for Glenda Jackson, adapting them from a number of the Queen's famous, official portraits.

Elizabeth R featured many well-known British actors, including Malcolm McFee, Michael Williams, Margaretta Scott, John Woodvine, James Laurenson, Angela Thorne, Brian Wilde, Robin Ellis, Robert Hardy and Peter Egan.

It was parodied in Monty Python's Flying Circus when they portrayed the cast on motor-scooters and speaking Engrish. Therefore, the title was changed to "Erizabeth L".

The series was first released in DVD Region 1 during 2001 by BBC Warner and re-released by BBC Worldwide in 2011. In DVD Region 2, it was issued by 2 Entertain in 2006.



External links

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