E! Picks Up UK Rights To Scripted Drama ‘The Royals’, Sets Premiere For March 25th

The Royals (FT)

E! UK is following the lead of its American cousin.

The Universal Networks International owned and operated channel has closed a deal with Lionsgate Television to pick up the exclusive first run UK rights to the first two seasons of The Royals, the scripted drama about the British royal family starring Elizabeth Hurley and Vincent Regan, TVWise has learned.

The Royals is set and shot in London and follows the exploits of a fictional Royal Family. The drama series pits public perception of the royal family against the reality of life inside the castle walls, from the lavish parties and high stakes political summits, to the private family gatherings and secret romances. However being born into this elite circle comes at a cost and the Royals’ lives are played out on a world stage where press is 24/7 and social media drives an insatiable appetite to follow their every move.

The drama, which is E!’s first ever original scripted series, was created by One Tree Hill‘s Mark Schwahn and has already been renewed for a second season. A co-production between Lionsgate Television and Universal Cable Productions, The Royals stars Elizabeth Hurley, Vincent Regan, William Moseley, Alexandra Park, Tom Austen, Jake Maskall, Ukweli Roach and Oliver Milburn. Joan Collins guest stars as the Grand Duchess of Oxford.

“As E! is the ultimate destination for A-list celebrity entertainment, The Royals is the perfect show to complement our line-up of Hollywood ‘royalty’”, said Nicky Douglas, Managing Director of Universal Networks International’s UK arm. “We are particularly excited by The Royals as E!’s first original scripted drama is set in the UK, features a stellar British cast, including Elizabeth Hurley and Joan Collins, together with young emerging local talent”.

“Lionsgate has enjoyed a great collaboration with E! on The Royals”, added Peter Iacono, Lionsgate’s President of International Television Distribution. “The series exemplifies the kind of distinctive and daring programming that defines and drives our TV brand and we’re very pleased that British viewers will have the opportunity to meet ‘The Royals’ when the series launches on E! UK next month.”

The Royals will premiere on E! UK on Wednesday March 25th at 9pm, less than two weeks after the series stars airing on E! in the United States.