Will and Kate’s royal romance dramatized
Four months after a royal wedding isn’t too late for a movie about the courtship, especially if the couple in question is Prince William and the former Kate Middleton.
That’s how Hallmark Channel sees it, at least, and evidence supports the newlyweds’ ongoing popularity with the worldwide public ... the attention to their recent trip to Canada and the United States being a prime example. Lifetime depicted their relationship the week before the wedding in the April drama “William & Kate,” and Hallmark offers its version when “William & Catherine: A Royal Romance” premieres Saturday.
Newcomers Dan Amboyer and Alice St. Clair have the title roles, but the teleplay co-written by executive producer and director Linda Yellen also spends much time on other parties to the relationship, giving some veteran performers chunky roles.
Two-time Emmy winner Jane Alexander plays Queen Elizabeth II, and Victor Garber (“Alias”) and Jean Smart — fresh from what turned out to be a short stint as the governor on CBS’ “Hawaii Five-0” — are cast as Prince Charles and Camilla Parker Bowles.
Debuting actress St. Clair came to “William & Catherine” with a bonus, though she didn’t let the producers know until she already had landed her part: She’s a lady. Her father is an earl and also the security chief for the queen.
“I went through the whole process of auditioning and everything,” St. Clair says, “then it was when I was already cast and having tea with Linda in London that she said, ‘You know what I read yesterday?’ She said it was so strange to see, having had no knowledge of that. And she also said, ‘This was even more meant to be.’ ”
British-born but now a New York resident, St. Clair admits playing someone with such a globally public profile was “quite a challenge and relatively daunting, but at the same time, it’s quite amazing to play someone so of-the-moment. I felt very privileged.
“I kind of told my family I was auditioning for it, though I didn’t want to get anyone too excited,” St. Clair adds. “When I finally got the part, I got my mom on Skype and said, ‘Mom?’ Then she got the whole family in, and there was screaming all through the house. And my little brother thought I was an extra. It was only later that he said, ‘You’re playing Kate?’ ”
Alice St. Clair plays Kate Middleton.