Elle Fanning won’t let sexism or a depraved husband stand in the way of her destiny in a new teaser for “The Great.” Slated to premiere on Hulu May 14, the satirical series, which is “sort of” based on historical facts, tells the story of Catherine the Great, the longest reigning female ruler in Russia’s history.
“Ever since I was a child, I felt like greatness was in store for me — like God himself had spat me forth from this earth for a reason,” Catherine (Fanning) says in the spot. Asked why, in that case, God made her a woman, she muses, “for comedy, I guess?”
After arriving in Russia for an arranged marriage, the idealistic young woman is disappointed to learn that her groom, Emperor Peter (Nicholas Hoult), is far from the man of her dreams. Still, Catherine maintains hope: she believes that she and her incompetent husband “can rule Russia in a different way.” Peter has other plans. He’s firmly convinced that he’s meant to rule and Catherine serve. It’s no wonder that Catherine seems pleased to discover that without an heir, the crown will go to her in the event of Peter’s death.
“All the Bright Places” and “The Roads Not Taken” are among Fanning’s most recent credits. She’ll re-team with her “Galveston” director, Mélanie Laurent, for “The Nightingale,” an adaptation of Kristin Hannah’s novel of the same name. Her sister, Dakota Fanning, will co-star in the WWII-set coming-of-age story about sisters trying to survive the German occupation of France.