The First Look at HBO's 'The Palace' is Sumptuous Authoritarianism
Kate Winslet is staying booked and busy, partnering with HBO for two projects she leads and co-produces. Perhaps to cover all her bases, the series she's diving into each comes from one side of the pond, with one limited series production based on the American author Hernan Diaz's hit novel, Trust. However, the other is the one that will catch the attention of Anglophiles. The new series is currently filming under the working title The Palace, with filming slated for Berlin and the U.K., in what looks to be a fictionalized European country that has fallen under an authoritarian regime.
The series is probably not directly British but falls into that nebulous "British-ish" space occupied by so much science fiction and fantasy. It comes from Will Tracy and Frank Rich, the duo behind the popular HBO series Succession. That series has its roots in British culture, based on the News of the World scandal in the U.K., and stars Brian Cox as the Murdoch-esque patriarch and Matthew Mcfadyen as his toadying son-in-law, among other British talents. However, The Palace looks to have a more euro-bent to its story, if the first look photo is anything to go by, and will be helmed by director Stephen Frears (A Very English Scandal).
So far, all character descriptions are being kept under wraps, though the photo definitely suggests that Winslet is the head of this dictatorship. As for the series' plot, HBO has only released the vaguest of loglines:
The Palace tells the story of one year within the walls of the palace of an authoritarian regime as it begins to unravel.
However, the cast does look pretty stellar, with Hugh Grant (Glass Onion) as a leading actor in the series with Winslet, marking their first time on screen together since 1996's Sense and Sensibility. Other previously announced cast includes newly Oscar-nominated Andrea Riseborough (To Leslie), Matthias Schoenaerts (The Danish Girl), Guillaume Gallienne (The French Dispatch), and Martha Plimpton (The Man Who Fell to Earth).
The Palace has just begun filming in Berlin, with more to come in the U.K. The series is expected to debut as part of the 2023-2024 TV season.