Created and written by award-winning playwright and television screenwriter Anya Reiss, Becoming Elizabeth is the untold tale of young Elizabeth Tudor (Alicia von Rittberg), long before she ruled England and Ireland for 44 years as Queen Elizabeth I, from 1558 to 1603, during what is called the Elizabethan Era.
Elizabeth Tudor and her siblings, Mary Tudor (Romola Garai) and Edward (Oliver Zetterström) find themselves embroiled in the political, sexual, religious, and corrupted games of the court, after the death of their father, King Henry VIII. As a result of this event, Elizabeth goes to live with the King’s widow, Catherine Parr (Jessica Raine), who soon marries Thomas Seymour (Tom Cullen), a very complex and controversial man who will rapidly take an interest in young Elizabeth.
Becoming Elizabeth Interviews
We had the chance to speak with the incredible cast of Becoming Elizabeth: Alicia von Rittberg (Elizabeth Tudor), Romola Garai (Mary Tudor), Jamie Blackley (Robert Dudley), Jessica Raine (Catherine Parr), and Tom Cullen (Thomas Seymour) who answered all of our questions on Becoming Elizabeth, during a very “royal” press junket.
You can watch the full interviews down below:
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Alicia von Rittberg is astonishing in the role of young Elizabeth, making her as vulnerable as determined to make her voice heard, while she navigates through the schemes, dangers, and manipulations of the English Court.
”I thought I’d be quite chill, but I’m not.” said the actress laughing, when we asked her how she felt ahead of the big release.
“I got the part about two years ago now. I’m so excited for everyone to watch it, I just can’t wait (…) I think you just really wanna get it right and to do it justice. I actually thought it was a joke, when I got it, because I am German (…) I could never imagine that they would give me the role. I was just so grateful that they didn’t even think about the fact that I’m German (…). That really helped me to believe it myself.” she continued.
Alicia von Rittberg also stated that she “basically lived the kind of lifestyle (Elizabeth) must have lived as well.
“Everything was so real,” she added. “I was allowed to learn horse riding, calligraphy, play the virginals, and ancient Greek, dancing (…) The costumes were like 100% historically accurate. I wore 8 different layers every day. We shot in such beautiful locations, (…) the whole world felt so real, it really didn’t take that much imagination to dive into it.”
We asked the actress if there was a moment in particular that made her realize the immensity of her role, and how big of a series Becoming Elizabeth was about to be:
“The costumes played a great part in it. There’s one scene where there’s like, some costume slitting (…) and we could only do it a few times because we ripped it. Having those different layers coming off, and then standing there, so very vulnerable, and all the different layers that played into it, like, the love, and care and the fun and yet the danger and the intrigues and the manipulation, it felt so real. (…) The closer we got to the characters, the more realistic it got.”
While Romola Garai and Jamie Blackley stated that people should watch the series because it’s a wonderful way to learn more about this period of time and the youth of Queen Elizabeth, while also being able to appreciate some breathtaking scenery, they also promised Becoming Elizabeth to be “sexy”. As for von Rittberg, she teased a ”brutal, raw and seductive” story.
Period drama fans are in for a ride with Becoming Elizabeth, available on StarzPlay on June 12.