ITV's Director of Drama Steve November has announced today that a major new drama series focusing on the life of Queen Victoria is coming to the network.

Ambitious in its aim, the eight-hour series will follow the early life of Britain's longest-reigning monarch who leaves her childhood behind and ascends to the throne aged just 18.

Queen Victoria
Queen Victoria

Mammoth Screen - producers of Poldark and Endeavour - make 'Victoria', with novelist Daisy Goodwin making her screenwriting debut with the series.

Speaking of the new series, Steve November said: "This epic series is a chance to see the Victorian age through the eyes of the Queen herself for the first time. She's a vibrant, fascinating character whose legacy lives on today. Her life story is one that is by turns genuinely dramatic, romantic and surprising. We are delighted to be working with Daisy Goodwin, who knows her subject intimately and has brought her to life beautifully, and with Mammoth, who we know are masters of epic period drama."

Executive producer Daisy Goodwin added: "I've been fascinated by Victoria since I started reading her diaries at university. She's a woman whose personality leaps off the page - a tiny 4 foot 11 teenager who overnight became the most powerful woman in the world, and her candour and spirit makes for an irresistible heroine. Victoria was the first woman to have it all; she had a passionate marriage, nine children and was grandmother to most of Europe's royalty, but she also had a job, being Queen of the most important nation in the world. It wasn't easy; her reign was beset by scandal and sleaze and it was only by sheer force of personality that she prevailed. Her diaries, all sixty two million words of them, give an astonishingly vivid picture of her transformation from rebellious teenager into, to my mind, our greatest Queen."

She will executive produce alongside Dan McCulloch and Mammoth Screen's Joint Managing Director Damien Timmer.

Damien says: "Queen Victoria's court is the perfect setting for an epic drama - a seething hotbed of scandal, corruption and romantic intrigue, involving everyone from the humblest dresser to the Mistress of the Robes, the lowliest bootboy to the Lord Chamberlain. When we join Victoria in 1837, England is unrecognisable from the country it will become by the end of her reign. As she takes her fledgling steps as monarch we slowly see modern Britain emerge.'

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