Sky on Monday launched high-end TV collection “Domina,” which examinesRoman historical past by means of a feminine prism, toplining Kasia Smutniak (“Perfect Strangers,” “Devils”) as Livia Drusilla, the politically astute third spouse of Emperor Augustus and mom of Emperor Tiberius, who managed to exert nice energy at a time of disaster for the Roman Empire.
The Comcast-owned paybox is airing “Domina” in Italy and the U.Okay. on May 14, adopted by playdates on Sky in Germany, Austria and Switzerland on June 3.
The epic costume drama — conceived and written by Simon Burke (“Fortitude,” “Strike Back”) and lead-directed byClaire McCarthy (“Ophelia,” “The Luminaries”) — is about to bow within the U.S. on Epix June 6.
Smutniak within the lead is supported by an A-list worldwide cast comprising Liam Cunningham who performs Livius, Livia’s father, and Isabella Rossellini taking part in Balbina, an early enemy.
The “Domina” cast additionally includes Matthew McNulty (“Misfits”) as the long run emperor Gaius, Christine Bottomley (“The End of the F***ing World”) as Scribonia, Gaius’ first spouse and Liva’s archrival; Colette Tchantcho (“The Witcher”) as Antigone, Ben Batt (“Captain America: The First Avenger”) as Agrippa; Enzo Cilenti (“Free Fire”) as Tiberius Claudius Nero; and Claire Forlani as Claudia Octavia, who was Gaius’ sister.
“Domina” follows Livia’s journey and rise “from a naive lady whose world crumbles within the wake of the assassination of Julius Caesar, to changing into Rome’s strongest and influential empress,” in response to promotional supplies.
Livia Drusilla’s rise to energy is “pushed by a deep want to avenge her father and to grant energy to his youngsters,” the synopsis reads. “She will succeed, brilliantly, by marrying the person who had taken the whole lot away from her, however she’s going to quickly uncover that conquering energy is just not sufficient: you want to have the ability to maintain it when everybody else craves it for [themselves].”
“We want tales like this; tales during which we depict sturdy ladies, who’re additionally fragile,” Smutniak stated throughout an internet press convention. “But extra importantly, ladies who’ve had a nice influence,” she added.
To be capable of painting Livia Drusilla this fashion inside a challenge “that goals to recount this time interval from a feminine standpoint is completely unprecedented,” she famous. Smutniak additionally identified that that is “a challenge for which it is of elementary significance to inform the factual actuality.”
Commenting on how historical past was reconstructed in “Domina,” McCarthy stated “tright here is at all times a effective line between historic accuracy and dramatic focus, and famous that “on this show, we labored very exhausting to search out the historic proof and ask questions” that will “make it related to at present’s audiences.”
As to how the show originated, Sky Italia director of authentic productions Niels Hartmann stated that they had been kicking across the thought of doing one thing on historic Rome for a whereas. But “after ‘Gladiator’ and HBO’s ‘Rome,’ in 2005, we thought there was this chance to depict that interval [again], however we would have liked an thought. We requested round, threw out some hooks to see if there have been some concepts on the market.”
“The thought got here from Simon Burke,” Hartmann added. “He got here again to us with a sturdy and distinctive thought, which is to recount the facility play in an historic Roman household, depicted from a feminine standpoint.”
“Domina” is by Sky Studios and Fifty Fathoms, with ITV-owned Cattleya within the function of government producers. The eight-episode collection was largely shot at Rome’s Cinecittà Studios. Oscar winner Gabriella Pescucci oversaw the costumes; Luca Tranchino (“Prison Break”) serves as set designer.
Executive producers are Patrick Spence, Marcus Wilson, Faye Dorn, Simon Burke and Claire McCarthy, together with John Phillips.
International distribution of “Domina” is being dealt with by NBCUniversal Global Distribution.