Directed by Yorgos Lanthimos
Great Britain, Ireland, USA, 2018
Running time 120'
Screenplay: Deborah Davis, Tony McNamara
Cinematography: Robbie Ryan
Music: Alexis Bennett, William Lyons
Editing: Yorgos Mavropsaridis
Cast: Olivia Colman (Queen Anne), Rachel Weisz (lady Sarah), Emma Stone (Abigail Masham), Nicholas Hoult (Robert Harley), Joe Alwyn (Samuel Masham), Mark Gatiss (John Churchill), James Smith (Godolphin), Jenny Rainsford (Mae), Emma Delves (Queen's maid), Faye Daveney (Sarah's maid), Lilly Rose Stevens (Sally), Carolyn Saint-Pé (Madame Tournée)
Festivals, awards (selection)
Venice 2018 (Grand Jury Prize, Best Actress), Telluride 2018, New York 2018, London 2018
Provocative Greek director Yorgos Lanthimos’ The Favourite is a rule-bending take on the conventional royal drama.
Early 18th century. England is at war with the French. Nevertheless, duck racing and pineapple eating are thriving. The frail Queen Anne occupies the throne and her close friend Lady Sarah governs the country in her stead while tending to Anne’s ill health and mercurial temper. When a new servant, Abigail, arrives, her charm endears her to Sarah who takes her under her wing. Abigail sees a chance at a return to her aristocratic roots. As the politics of war become quite time consuming for Sarah, Abigail steps into the breach to fill in as the Queen’s companion. Their burgeoning friendship gives her a chance to fulfil her ambitions and she will not let woman, man, politics or rabbit stand in her way.
“When you make a film set in another era it’s always interesting to see how it relates to our times – and you realise how few things have changed, apart from the clothes and the fact that today we have electricity and the Internet. There are many similarities in behaviour, society and power.” (Yorgos Lanthimos)