One of the great joys of William Shakespeare‘s enduring legacy (aside from the mind-blowing works themselves, is having the opportunity, time and again, to see the best actors of the screen and stage tackle his tremendous works. The latest exciting adaptation comes from the folks at BBC and Amazon, who united an all-star cast of actors to tackles Shakespeare’s King Lear with none other than Anthony Hopkins in the title role.
Hopkins reunites with director Richard Eyre (Notes on a Scandal), who previously teamed with the actor on the Shakespearean history drama The Dresser back in 2015. For his spin on King Lear, Eyre sets the action in a fictional present day, where Lear decides to step down from his throne and divide his kingdom among his daughters according to their professions of love for him. It’s a Shakespeare tragedy, so obviously, that all goes very poorly.
The feature-length TV drama was commissioned by the BBC and premiered on BBC Two in the UK, but for the stateside folks, you can look forward to watching when it airs exclusively on Amazon Prime September 28. King Lear also stars Emma Thompson as Goneril, Emily Watson a Regan, Florence Pugh as Cordelia, and Jim Broadbent as the Earl of Gloucester. Watch the new trailer below.
Here’s the official synopsis:
“Set in the fictional present, King Lear begins as the 80 year-old King Lear divides his kingdom among his daughters, Goneril, Regan and Cordelia, according to their affection for him. Cordelia refuses to flatter him, so he banishes her. Having acquired power, Goneril and Regan expel their father from their homes. At the same time, Lear’s prime minister, Gloucester, is betrayed by his son Edmund and his other son, Edgar, is forced to go into hiding. Lear becomes mad, Gloucester is blinded: both the kingdom and the family collapse into chaos and warfare. Lear and Cordelia are re-united; for a brief moment love reigns, then tragedy descends.”