And I'm not referring to Mrs. Bleck-ham. THE YOUNG VICTORIA is a movie opening this March and features Emily Blunt in the leading role of Queen Victoria. (Remember Blunt as the snarky secretary in THE DEVIL WEARS PRADA?) It begins in 1836 and tells the story of the early years of Victoria, before she became queen at the age of eighteen, and of her romance with Prince Albert. We're used to thinking of Queen Victoria as a fat dowdy old woman dressed in black who ruled England for over sixty years. But this movie shows us the flirty, saucy side of her. Martin Scorcese is attached to the project, as is Graham King (THE AVIATOR, THE DEPARTED) so I'm pretty excited.
Trivia alert: I've been in her bedroom and private suites in Kensington Palace. I wandered through it all alone on a rainy February day a few years ago when I ditched my husband and kids at the Natural History Museum (been there, done that, didn't want to see another stuffed monkey.) The palace was fairly deserted owing to bad weather and the late afternoon hour, so I pretty much had the place to myself. The clouds cleared just as I reached her bedroom and I stood in the silence and just breathed in the essence of the place. Pretty cool beans, I'll tell you. Check out the trailer:
True Confession Time: I'm a Masterpiece Theatre girl going way back to 1971 when it began. Remember the introductory music, the Rondeau from "Symphonies and Fanfares for the King's Supper"? Brought to you by Exxon Mobil? And the eloquent, erudite Alistair Cooke sitting in his wing-backed chair by the fire introducing each episode? Oh, I get all fluttery just thinking about it. I used Masterpiece Theatre as a reward, a much needed break from studying (along with the Mary Tyler Moore Show) when I was at university, so I still get an almost Pavlovian response when I hear the music. Like eyes welling up, sighing, hugging self kind of reaction. Remember, this was before PVRs and TiVo and such, so you had to drop everything when it was on and cosy up to the television which was the size of a small truck. It was such a guilty pleasure to sip tea and eat dark chocolate-covered digestives and forget work and my self-imposed student poverty for a short while.
Hands up those of you who also watched:
THE DUCHESS OF DUKE STREET
THE JEWEL IN THE CROWN (although now all I can think of is "want bitty" when I see Geraldine James, so that's pretty much ruined that one for me, thank you LITTLE BRITAIN)
Listen to this and tell me you're not feeling it:
Fanfare ("Masterpiece Theater" Theme) - English Philharmonic Orchestra
Edited to add:
If you want to see the remaining cast members at their 2007 reunion, go HERE