If you are a fan of History’s Vikings, get ready for their latest history-based TV series, Knightfall. This series is due to begin production this summer and will base its story on the secretive world of the Knights Templar.
When Vikings hit TV screens in 2013, it carved out new niche for the History Channel. Suddenly the show was being compared to Game of Thrones but with a historical edge that brought the world of the vikings to an audience like never before. Sure, the show wasn’t as historically accurate as it could have been, but it had just enough basis in the viking sagas to keep fans delving into the history of the viking era in order to work out what might happen next in each season of Vikings. Knightfall is set to follow in the quasi-historical vein.
After Vikings had been renewed for Season 4 with twenty episodes rather than 10 and fans still couldn’t seem to fill the gap, along came Barbarians Rising. This show, currently still airing on History, went back to its roots and presents a series that is based on historical evidence, but also brings the characters to life much in the same way History did with Ragnar, Lagertha, King Ecbert and all of the other characters from Vikings fans have grown to love. It seems it is this niche of brutal history that the History Channel is attempting to fill with new shows such as Knightfall. Knightfall will follow the true events surrounding the mysterious Knight’s Templar. A real group from the time of the Crusades, Knightfall will attempt to bring their story to life again with History’s newest 10-episode historical drama.
The official synopsis for Knightfall is as follows.
“The Knights Templar were the most powerful, wealthy and mysterious military order of the Middle Ages, entrusted with protecting the Holy Grail and harboring secrets capable of destroying the Church itself. Knightfall goes deep into the inner sanctum of the clandestine world of this legendary brotherhood of warrior monks. From their battles in the Holy Land, to their clashes with both the King of France and Pope Boniface VIII, to the betrayal that would ultimately lead to their tragic dissolution on Friday the 13th–a date which became synonymous with bad luck–the story of the Knights Templar has never been fully told until now. Knightfall takes you inside the world to find out who these knights were, how they lived, and what they died believing.”
Alongside Tom Cullen, who was previously named as a cast member by Variety, History has released the following cast list. Bobby Schofield (Black Sea) as Parsifal, a commoner who will join the Knights Templar seeking revenge, but ultimately finds a higher purpose in Knightfall. Sabrina Bartlett (DaVinci’s Demons) as Princess Isabella, the daughter of Queen Joan and King Philip, and promised in marriage in order to forge a powerful political alliance for France. Julian Ovenden (Downton Abbey) as De Nogaret, King Philip’s Machiavellian lawyer and right hand man in Knightfall. Sarah-Sofie Boussnina (The Bridge) as Adelina. Now in her 20s, Adelina is a common thief who was rescued as a child by the Templar Knights. Padraic Delaney (The Tudors) as Gawain, a once great swordsman of the Templar Order, but is now at a crossroads. Simon Merrells (Spartacus) as Tancrede, a Templar Knight fanatic. Olivia Ross (War and Peace) rounds out the Knightfall cast as Queen Joan of Navarre, Queen of France and Queen Regnant of Navarre, a devoted mother, warrior, and a formidable diplomat and strategist.
According to the press release issued by History, production for Knightfall will begin this summer in Croatia and the Czech Republic. Knightfall has been created by Don Handfield (Touchback, The Founder, Kill the Messenger) and Richard Rayner (L.A. Without A Map). Oscar and Golden Globe nominee, Jeremy Renner (Avengers, American Hustle, The Hurt Locker), will act as executive producer on Knightfall. Dominic Minghella of Island Pictures has signed on as an executive producer and showrunner for the series. Minghella is probably best known for his work on the TV series Doc Martin and Robin Hood.
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[Image via History]