The Fox country music drama Monarch, starring Susan Sarandon, Trace Adkins and Anna Friel, has been delayed until fall. The series was originally scheduled for a Jan. 30 release date, was delayed due to COVID-19.
"Monarch is a top priority for Fox Entertainment in 2022," the network said in a statement. "Unfortunately, due to the unavoidable realities of the pandemic and the profound impact COVID-19 continues to have on our industry and around the world, it is necessary to reschedule Monarch's Jan. 30 debut to the fall. As the cornerstone of Fox's new 2022-23 slate, shifting a show of this magnitude allows us to have its entire first season produced, create additional, high-profile content and promotional windows to support launch, and give our viewers the best opportunity to enjoy the series as intended with a non-compromised run of episodes."
According to The Hollywood Reporter, production will continue throughout the spring.
The trailer for the upcoming series teases intrigue and plenty of family drama.
The show, executive produced and created by Melissa London Hilfers, centers on a multigenerational country music family, the Romans, known as America's first family of country music.
Variety reports Saradon will play country queen Dottie Cantrell Roman, while Adkins will portray her husband and fellow country superstar, "Texas truthteller" Albie Roman. Adkins is no stranger to acting projects, having appeared in The Lincoln Lawyer, I Can Only Imagine and more.
Friel (Pushing Daisies) will portray their daughter and heir to the family dynasty, Nicolette "Nicky" Roman, who strives to ensure her family's legacy while pursuing stardom.
"When their reign as country royalty is put in jeopardy, Nicky Roman, the heir to the crown, already battling an industry stacked against her, will stop at nothing to protect her family's legacy," Variety reports.
The series will feature both original songs and covers.
Along with Hilfers and showfunner Michael Rauch, the show is also executive produced by country music manager Jason Owen of Sandbox Entertainment, whose clients include Kacey Musgraves, Faith Hill, Dan + Shay and the estates of Johnny Cash and June Carter Cash.
Deadline reports that Fox opened a writers room for the drama in 2020.
"Music-driven programming is a big part of the DNA of Fox's success with shows like The Masked Singer, Empire, American Idol and Glee," Fox Entertainment President Michael Thorn told Deadline. "We have been looking for new ways to tell stories with music; what's the next chapter for us in terms of a juicy drama that incorporates music in the storytelling."
Monarch joins the series Our Kind of People as the two Fox series to bypass a pilot order and advance to a writers room.
Monarch is the latest country music-related project headed to the small screen. News of the series follows a rumored Real Housewives-esque reality show project. Singer Jana Kramer and Jason Aldean's wife, Brittany Aldean, were rumored to be attached to the show, but both have denied involvement.
This article previously ran on Sept. 7, 2021. It was updated on Jan. 13, 2022 to reflect the new release date.
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