FIRST LOOK: TNT Picks Up Pilot for Young William Shakespeare Drama

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Billy Shakes, a rock star?

At least that is what we are led to believe in the fresh trailer for the drama pilot Will, that TNT picked up this week. Let’s just say I am picking up what they are putting down!

The 10-episode series will tell the tale of William Shakespeare in his 20s when he first arrived in London and began his career as an actor transiting into a poet who then transitions into the most famous playwright of ALL TIME!

Will was originally slated for an HBO release but things change. At least we will get to see the series come to life. The series was created by Craig Pearce, writing partner to filmmaker Baz Luhrmann, and you can tell from the trailer there is a bit of a Baz element to the series. The series is executive produced by Pearce, Shekhar Kapur (Elizabeth), Alison Owen (Elizabeth) and Debra Hayward (Love Actually), Vince Gerardis, Howard Braunstein and Louise Rosager.

The series stars newcomer Laurie Davidson as a young William Shakespeare, Olivia DeJonge as Alice Burbage, Colm Meaney as James Burbage, Mattias Inwood as Richard Burbage, Jamie Campbell Bower as Christopher Marlowe, and Ewen Bremner as Richard Topcliffe.

Here is a synopsis from Deadline:

Will tells the wild story of young William Shakespeare’s arrival onto the punk-rock theater scene in 16th century London – the seductive, violent world where his raw talent faced rioting audiences, religious fanatics and raucous side-shows. It’s described as a contemporary version of Shakespeare’s life, played to a modern soundtrack that exposes all his recklessness, lustful temptations and brilliance.

Here is the description of plot episode:

Attracted to Will’s naïve genius is Alice Burbage (DeJonge), the talented, beautiful and rebellious daughter of James Burbage (Meaney), the carpenter with a vision to build the first theater in London since Roman times. Despite being the daughter of an impresario, Alice is forbidden by society from pursuing a career in the theater. Her brother Richard Burbage (Inwood), is innately talented, but too much in love with himself and prone to overact. A chance encounter at the theater leads him to team up with Will in what would soon become the greatest actor-writer partnership the world has ever seen. Rounding out Will’s cast of characters are playwright, poet and chief Shakespeare rival Christopher Marlowe (Bower) and wealthy and notorious law enforcer Richard Topcliffe (Bremner).

So Billy Shakes fans, are you down for punk Will?

Will is slated to premiere in 2017. 

Kait Calabrò

Kait Calabrò

Lady Kaitlin Marie Bernadette Calabrò of House Ravenclaw, First of Her Name; Mother of Recaps, Breaker of News, Khaleesi of Wonder Wharf, Queen of Geekdom, and Empress of Anglophiles, is the Managing Editor of AGtM.  By day she is the Marketing Manager of the Philadelphia Film Society, by night she is a serious relationship with her Netflix account. Kait is a proud Temple Owl! And is currently in a celebrity feud with both Samuel L. Jackson and Zachary Levi, unbeknownst to them. She spends her evenings watching the skies waiting for Thor to fly down and take her back to Asgard!
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