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The historical drama HYDE PARK ON HUDSON started production this week. The script, penned by Richard Nelson, creatively imagines a real event: the first-ever visit of a reigning English monarch to America. In this case, King George VI and Queen Elizabeth of England coming in June, 1939 to President Franklin Delano Roosevelt's Hudson Valley home Hyde Park.

Roger Michell will direct HYDE PARK ON HUDSON, with Bill Murray as Franklin Delano Roosevelt, and Olivia Williams (recently from HANNA) as his wife Eleanor. Samuel West will play King George VI, with Olivia Colman as Queen Elizabeth. Despite all these historically important names, the story really belongs to Daisy (Laura Linney), Franklin's distant cousin, neighbor, and intimate. In all, it's an unforgettable weekend, with world-changing issues (like war with Germany) on the table, and complicated family and personal issues percolating behind closed doors. Focus CEO James Schamus notes, "Filmgoers will be intrigued by this unique exploration of the all-too-human side of one of history's great men. Roger is an actor's director who will guide Bill and Laura through their playing of Richard's script, which beautifully encompasses satire and drama."

For complete details, see HYDE PARK ON HUDSON Press Release.