×

ITV Orders Up Second Season of Glittery Royal Drama ‘Victoria’

ITV, Britain’s biggest commercial broadcaster, has ordered a second season of hit period drama “Victoria,” about the early years of Queen Victoria’s reign.

The show has become ITV’s top-rated drama of 2016 since its debut last month, and will be broadcast in the U.S. starting Jan. 15 on PBS, in the Sunday night “Downton Abbey” slot. The show stars Jenna Coleman of “Doctor Who” fame as the young monarch and Tom Hughes as her husband, Prince Albert.

“Even though she reigned in the 19th century, Victoria is a heroine for our times,” said screenwriter and executive producer Daisy Goodwin.

Coleman and Hughes have been confirmed to return for the second season, which will be written by Goodwin and produced by U.K. independent Mammoth Screen. Goodwin said that the new season will focus on the “very modern dilemma of how to juggle children with her husband and her job.”

“Mammoth and Daisy Goodwin have brought the characters so vividly to life in this series, and we’re thrilled with the reception for ‘Victoria,’” said Kevin Lygo, ITV’s director of television, who announced the re-commission Friday with head of drama Polly Hill.

The new season will also see Paul Frift return as producer. Goodwin will serve as executive producer alongside Mammoth Screen’s Damien Timmer and Kate McKerrell.

Timmer hinted at the potential for even more seasons for the costume drama, whose title character occupied the British throne for more than 60 years, second only to her great-great-granddaughter the current queen, Elizabeth II. “The next few years of Victoria’s reign are packed full of extraordinary real-life events, with constitutional crises, scandals at court and personal challenges aplenty for the queen and Prince Albert,” Timmer said.

“Victoria” is a co-production with PBS Masterpiece and is distributed internationally by ITV Studios Global Entertainment.

The season opener in Britain last month averaged 7.7 million viewers and a 29.7% share, based on consolidated overnights.

Popular on Variety

More TV

  • T.J. Dillashaw, right, kicks Cody Garbrandt

    Disney Plans UFC Broadcast for FX

    UFC matches will return to FX  – but not on a permanent basis. ESPN has been showing preliminary bouts to UFC pay-per-view events for the last while on ESPN and ESPN2, and then showing the main card on its ESPN+ subscription video service. In September, the early lineup will air on FX, which the UFC [...]

  • George RR Martin

    George R.R. Martin Says HBO's 'Game of Thrones' Ending Won't Influence Future Novels

    Geroge R.R. Martin is sticking to his original plan when it comes to the future of “Game of Thrones.” In an interview with The Observer, Martin claimed that HBO’s controversial ending for the series would have no affect on the endings of the last two novels. “No, it doesn’t. It doesn’t change anything at all,” [...]

  • Listen: 'Pennyworth' Producer Talks Delving into

    Listen: 'Pennyworth' Executive Producer Talks Delving into Alfred's Backstory

    Bruno Heller may have served as an executive producer on the Batman-inspired series “Gotham” for the past five years, but it’s actually real-life people (not superheroes) that intrigue the producer the most. It’s for that exact reason that Heller’s newest series finds him exploring the origin stories of Batman’s butler Alfred in the Epix drama [...]

  • "Trust Issues" - Dylan and Lizzie

    'Instinct' Canceled After Two Seasons

    CBS has canceled “Instinct” after two seasons. Series creator Michael Rauch announced the cancellation Friday on Twitter, writing, “I’m very sad to relay the news that @instinctcbs won’t be renewed for a 3rd season. We will double up this Sunday and our season/series finale will be Aug 25.” Rauch also thanked series stars Alan Cumming [...]

  • Maisel Day

    My Mostly OK Maisel Day (Column)

    When Amazon announced its first-ever Maisel Day, I was intrigued. For one day, Aug. 15, “The Marvelous Mrs. Maisel” fans and Angelenos (fangelenos?) could hit up various restaurants, theaters and retailers throughout Los Angeles for special deals, all at 1959 prices. Among the gems: $2.50 makeovers, $0.99 pastrami sandwiches and $0.30 for a gallon of [...]

  • Nordisk Film & TV Fond Announces

    Nordisk Film & TV Fond Backs Joachim Trier, Ole Bornedal, Yellow Bird

    Nordisk Film & TV Fond has announced three features, two series and a documentary set to receive $1.4m in financing, as well as distribution, dubbing and cultural initiative support recipients. Doing so, it highlights some of the key titles moving forward in the Nordic region. Already backed by the Danish Film Institute’s largest ever grant [...]

  • TV News Roundup: 'Silicon Valley' Final

    TV News Roundup: 'Silicon Valley's' Final Season Sets October Premiere Date

    In today’s roundup, “Silicon Valley” returns to HBO on Oct. 27 and Quibi greenlights a new cooking competition show “Dismantled.” DATES The fifth season of Netflix‘s “Peaky Blinders” will premiere on the streamer Oct. 4. The newest season will continue to follow one gangster family in the lawless streets of Birmingham, UK during the midst [...]

More From Our Brands

Access exclusive content