Belfast Telegraph

Emma Thompson takes Queen Elizabeth I role in comedy Upstart Crow second series

Emma Thompson is set to take on the role of Queen Elizabeth I in the second series of Shakespeare-inspired comedy, Upstart Crow.

Filming has already begun on the programme, featuring the return of comedians David Mitchell and Harry Enfield as the bard and his father, as well as a number of special guest appearances.

One episode will see him put before the queen, played by Thompson, to present an early draft of his play Twelfth Night under the working title Eighth Night.

Another episode will feature The Mighty Boosh's Noel Fielding as Thomas Morley as the pair collaborate on a new comedy.

The new stories come as Shakespeare continues his tireless aim to make it as a London playwright, while keeping his family happy at his Stratford-upon-Avon home.

With the help of his friends, played by Rob Rouse, Gemma Whelan and Tim Downie, he will battle commuting problems - including continuous coach cancellations - take a low-cost trip to Verona, and suffer a reunion with a nasty schoolmaster.

Following it's success last year, Upstart Crow was this week named best new TV sitcom at the comedy.co.uk awards.

The programme is written by Ben Elton and stars Paula Wilcox as Will's mother Mary Arden, Liza Tarbuck as his wife Anne Hathaway, Helen Monks as their daughter Susanna, and Mark Heap as his nemesis Robert Greene.

Chris Sussman head of comedy at BBC Studios said: "It's great to welcome back our merry band of players - and if David Mitchell manages to learn all the soliloquies Ben's written for him then he should be instantly knighted."

:: Upstart Crow will return to BBC Two later this year, but an official date has not yet been released.

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