Saturday, October 16, 2010

Camelot - New TV Series Starring Eva Green and Joseph Fiennes

I've been an undying fan of Arthurian legend for as long as I can remember. I wish I could say that my first encounter with the Knights of the Round Table was Malory's Morte D'Arthur, or even Howard Pyle (though both came very soon after!). No, it was actually Bing Crosby's 1949 version of A Connecticut Yankee in King Arthur's Court. I was about 7, and was completely captivated by the film. Looking back, I realize the the story was pretty silly, and a commercial failure of epic proportions. But as a kid, none of that mattered. I was hooked from the moment Bing woke up in Camelot - I loved the clothes, romance, adventure and the corny, stilted, olde-ish English (and, truth be told, I still like the movie!).


Even today, it seems I can't get enough of Arthurian legend on film. Good, bad or indifferent, I'm always willing to check out the latest Hollywood offering. So, imagine my delight at the announcement that Eva Green (Casino Royale) and Joseph Fiennes (Shakespeare in Love) will be starring as Morgana and Merlin in a new television series entitled Camelot. The series is set to premier in early 2011 and will be broadcast internationally by GK-TV, through the CBC in Canada and by Starz in the US.

The 10 part mini-series will be based on Malory's Morte D'Arthur, and is being shot at Ardmore Studios, where The Tudors was also filmed.

Will you be watching?

Image: Sir Edward Coley Burne-Jones, The Beguiling of Merlin, 1872-1877


Thorsprincess said...

I loved the illustration you chose for your post--beautiful. I wonder if you got to see the British Merlin television series last year. It was very popular here, and I believe there may be future episodes. It was a lot of fun, with beautiful sets and costumes, some interesting actors. I especially loved some of the use of imagery that suggested the gradual change of Morgana to a melusine figure, as she became more aware of her power. Her green cloak in the woods was a hint. I loved the series, and I hope it returns.

As you say, Connecticut Yankee in King Arthur's Court was a great hit in our family, as well. Any re-telling of the legend is always welcome!

Medieval Muse said...

Oh yes!!! I watch every movie + tv series based on Arthurian legend, even the whimsical ones. I read that James Purefoy is also in this series and I love him!!! I'm curious if this will be a modern retelling, or historical drama.

21st Century Stunner said...

I will be watching! Can't wait! I love both of those actors :-) Did you ever see that horrible made for tv movie with Malcom McDowell in the 1980s? I think it was called Arthur the King. omg, it was bad. But I LOVED it at the time. Rupert Everett was Lancelot and I was so in love with him, ha ha!

William F. Torpey said...

Most of Bing Crosby movies were just a little bit hokey when it comes to plotlines, but Bing was always fantastic and so were most of his co-stars. "A Connecticut Yankee in King Arthur's Court" was one of my favorite Bing vehicles. His voice was magnificent as always and the songs were quite good. I particularly like "Busy Doing Nothing." I don't think anyone has to apologize for liking Bing's movies.

Margaret said...

@Thorsprincess - I haven't seen Merlin yet! I have the whole series, but I want to start watching it some time when I actually have time to see it. I hate getting started on something and not being able to finish. I've heard it's great.

@Medieval Muse - Yes, this series is going to be an historical drama.

@21st Century Stunner - No, I haven't seen that one! I think everyone has a "so bad it's good" favorite from this genre.

@William F. Torpey - Thanks for stopping by! Yes, Bing made a lot of hokey movies, but I love them too. And I can't wait to introduce my daughter to "A Connecticut Yankee in King Arthur's Court". I honestly think it was not a bad film, the public just didn't appreciate it! Unfortunately it was Bing's biggest flop at the box office. What a shame. It's a very entertaining film.

P. M. Doolan said...

Is this a BBC programme? I think that Ardmore studios are in Ireland, right? I can't wait.

Margaret said...

No, it's actually not a BBC programme. Channel 4 has bought the rights to broadcast it. And yes, Ardmore studios are in Ireland. It should be a beautiful production - I can hardly wait either!

Pamela Terry and Edward said...

The Richard Harris version caught my imagination completely when I was a little girl. I've never gotten over it. Happily.

The Nightwatchman said...

I had a similar experience with Ron Ely's Doc Savage - the man of bronze, which gets slated as one of the worst films ever. Yet I enjoyed it and still has a place in my heart.
It got me interested in the character, but we didn't have any US pulp or very few reprints over here. The comics either from Marvel or DC never really took off. At least I did get a copy of Philip Jose Farmer's biogrpahy of Doc.

Any one else read H Warner Munn's Merlin's Godson and Merlin's Ring? Set in the Americas and with Atlantis throw in?