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Catherine the Great, Criminal Justice and the Footsteps of Bruce Chatwin—top television programmes for October

Helen Mirren turns 18th-century Russian empress in a new HBO series

By Chris Harvey   October 2019

Helen Mirren as Catherine the Great

Catherine the Great

Sky Atlantic, 3rd October

Helen Mirren stars as the 18th-century Russian empress, who presided over the country’s rise to becoming a great European power (and was famously promiscuous). This HBO series is written by novelist Nigel Williams, who won an Emmy for his screenplay for Elizabeth I, in which Mirren played another singular monarch. Director Philip Martin won a Bafta for The Crown and has directed Mirren before, in Prime…

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