In most films depicting historical events, painstaking attention to period-accurate details is the norm, with a keen eye on ensuring everything aligns with the era’s specifics. After all, a horde of meticulous historians could be at the ready, ready to scrutinize every button and thread. However, in the case of the popular Hulu series, “The Great,” created by Tony McNamara and centered around Catherine the Great, a unique approach to historical accuracy is taken. McNamara deliberately introduces anachronisms into the narrative, deviating from the typical historical drama formula. The result is not strict historical accuracy, but rather a sense of authenticity that breathes life into characters who might otherwise be sidelined by history, particularly women.
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These anachronisms within “The Great” vary in scale, from minor details such as modern haircuts to more significant historical deviations, like the timing of Catherine’s mother’s passing and its implications for her marriage. While the series unfolds centuries ago and features characters long gone, the deliberate inclusion of elements recognizable from our own time gives it a unique immediacy that is often missing from traditional historical films.
McNamara has consistently described “The Great” as a 21st-century drama cleverly intertwined with its historical setting. This approach has proven successful, as the show manages to convey the essence of its era while also embracing a modern sensibility. While period costumes and reminders of the historical context are present, the Russian court of Catherine the Great feels refreshingly modern, more akin to a dark comedy than a traditional political cautionary tale. Remarkably, “The Great” effortlessly navigates its anachronistic approach without straining to make itself overly “relatable.”
With anticipation building for the third season of this acclaimed series, let’s explore everything we currently know about “The Great” Season 3.
Editor’s Note: This article was last updated on April 16th, including the release of the trailer.
Where and When Is The Great Season 3 Premiering?
In an exciting announcement made in January 2022, Hulu revealed that viewers can mark their calendars for the premiere of all ten episodes of “The Great” Season 3. The highly anticipated release is set for Friday, May 12, 2023, exclusively on the streaming service. Fortunately for fans, there won’t be a prolonged wait this time, unlike the gap between Season 1 and Season 2, which was caused by the disruptions of the COVID-19 pandemic.
While the countdown to Season 3 continues, you can dive into the captivating world of “The Great” by catching up on the first two seasons, which are readily available for streaming on Hulu. Just click the button below to embark on this historical journey.
Watch the Trailer for The Great Season 3
Get ready to laugh because the uproarious first trailer for “The Great” Season 3 hit screens on April 12, 2023. Don’t miss the fun – you can watch it in the player above!
Who’s In the Cast of The Great Season 3?
The Great stars the talented Elle Fanning as young Catherine the Great and the charismatic Nicholas Hoult as Peter III of Russia. In Season 3, fan favorites Phoebe Fox, known for her roles in The Aeronauts and Eye in the Sky, and Adam Godley, recognized for his work in Breaking Bad and The Umbrella Academy, are back as Catherine’s loyal friends, Marial and Archbishop Archie. At the end of Season 2, Marial faced imprisonment for revealing Peter’s shocking actions, raising questions about whether Catherine will forgive or forget her betrayal. Meanwhile, Archie, the archbishop with a penchant for debauchery, continues to grapple with his crisis of faith.
The returning cast also includes Gwilym Lee and Charity Wakefield as Grigor and Georgina Dymov, Peter’s closest confidants. Douglas Hodge reprises his role as the bombastic General Velementov, and Sacha Dhawan returns as the shrewd bureaucrat Orlo. Bayo Gbadamosi is back as Arkady, while Belinda Bromilow brings her comedic flair to the screen as Peter’s eccentric Aunt Elizabeth.
Who Are the Creators of The Great?
The Great is the brainchild of Australian writer and producer Tony McNamara, who has also made a mark with movies like The Favourite and Cruella. McNamara serves as the creator, writer, and executive producer of this captivating series. The show’s executive producers include Marian Macgowan, Mark Winemaker, Elle Fanning, Nicholas Hoult, Brittany Kahan Ward, Doug Mankoff, Andrew Spaulding, Josh Kesselman, Ron West, and Matt Shakman. The series is brought to life by Civic Center Media in association with MRC Television, Thruline Entertainment, Echo Lake Entertainment, Lewellen Pictures, and Macgowan Films. In Season 3, the talented directors at the helm include Matthew Moore, Sheree Folkson, and Jaffar Mahmood.
What’s The Great Season 3 About?
As Season 2 of The Great came to a close, the tumultuous relationship between Catherine (Elle Fanning) and Peter (Nicholas Hoult) was far from resolved. Despite Catherine’s admission of her feelings for Peter and the birth of their son Paul, the power struggle for the throne continued. Their relationship took another hit when Catherine discovered Peter had been involved with her mother (Gillian Anderson, who regrettably won’t appear in Season 3) before her tragic fall from a window. This revelation led to a shocking act – Catherine stabbed her husband in the back, only to realize it was a peasant lookalike in Peter’s place. The two reconciled to some extent, but the knowledge that Catherine is capable of such an act casts a dark cloud over their marriage.
The upcoming season is poised to delve deeper into their personal and political challenges. Catherine faces pressure from all sides, resulting in schemes, complex relationships, and coup attempts. As she strives to modernize Russia, she grapples with issues both internal and external. Season 3 promises encounters with notable historical figures like writer Voltaire (Dustin Demri-Burns) and the American ambassador. Catherine is also making efforts to connect with Peter and their young son, Paul.
Meanwhile, Peter, sidelined from political power, attempts to embrace his role as “First Husband” by pursuing activities like hunting and culinary experimentation. However, his newfound interests may not be enough to satisfy his desire for power. The question remains: has Peter truly transformed from the insensitive and unfaithful man Catherine married in Season 1, or will old habits resurface? The upcoming season holds the answer.
While the future of Catherine and Peter’s relationship remains uncertain, one thing is clear – their story is far from over. The Great was originally envisioned as a six-season series, and with its critical acclaim and award nominations for Fanning and Hoult, viewers can expect plenty more drama beyond the ten episodes of Season 3.