The FOX country music drama Monarch, starring Susan Sarandon, Trace Adkins and Anna Friel, was originally scheduled for a Jan. 30 release date, but was delayed due to COVID-19. The highly anticipated new series will finally premiere with a special two-night event starting Sunday, Sept. 11, following the FOX NFL doubleheader. Starting on Tuesday, Sept 20, the series will move to its permanent time slot of 9:00-10:00 PM ET/PT. The latest trailer was released with some exciting news in addition to being full of intrigue and family drama. There are some major country stars set to make guest star appearances throughout the first season, and we seriously can't wait.
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. The series will feature both original songs and covers, a couple of which have already been released, including the catchy theme song. Among the country stars set to make special appearances, expect to see Shania Twain, Little Big Town, Martina McBride, and Tanya Tucker throughout the season.
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.
Meanwhile, 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. Beth Ditto co-stars as the youngest in the family, Gigi Taylor-Roman, who's always felt like an outcast despite having an incredible voice. Based on the trailer, it seems like Gigi might threaten Nicky's dreams of reaching the top.
"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.
Along with Hilfers and showrunner 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. So we know that the series is in good hands who know a thing or two about the ins and outs of country music stardom.
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."
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This article previously ran on Sept. 7, 2021. It was updated on Aug. 18 with news of special guest stars.
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