The first season of The Great largely lived up the title, cataloguing how Catherine The Great (Elle Fanning) first arrived in Russia and began her slow rise to power as the wife of mercurial Emperor Peter (Nicholas Hoult). With the addition of Gillian Anderson as Catherine’s mother, it has the potential to reach beyond that.

Created by The Favourite co-writer Tony McNamara, the second season will pick up (spoiler alert if you’ve yet to watch the first) where we left off, with Catherine making her first attempt to seize control of the country.

Anderson will be Joanna, a glamorous socialite from Germany, sometimes also known as the “maestro of marriage” for her abilities to arrange high profile partnerships for her daughters. She has heard rumors of her daughter’s coup and come to Russia to see it for herself. Though the apple of Catherine’s eye and a doting mother, it soon becomes clear Johanna has more sinister intentions to save her family’s reputation…

Phoebe Fox, Adam Godley, Gwilym Lee, Charity Wakefield, Douglas Hodge, Sacha Dhawan, Bayo Gbadamosi and Jamie Demetriou are also in the cast for the series, which has yet to confirm a date for the second run of episodes.

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