Anthony Hopkins to Play Composer George Frideric Handel in ‘The King of Covent Garden’ Biopic

2nd May, 2024


Anthony Hopkins is taking on yet another iconic figure, this time from the world of music.

The stage and screen legend — a two-time Academy Award winner — is attached to star as George Frideric Handel in “The King of Covent Garden,” set during the period the famed opera composer worked on his choral masterpiece “Messiah.” Embankment Films has launched global pre-sales on the project, which is scheduled for a late fall 2025 release.

Andrew Levitas (“Minimata”) will direct “The King of Covent Garden” from a script by Tim Slover, with the filmmakers pitching the feature as “a powerfully majestic celebration of genius breaking all the rules to create an anthem inspiring the popular imagination of global audiences.” Dan Lupovitz (“Death Defying Acts,” “Simpatico”) and Kevan Van Thompson (“Ballerina,” “Jojo Rabbit”) will produce.

Global operatic mezzo-soprano star Katherine Jenkins joins Peter Touche (“Military Wives,” “Blinded by the Light”) as executive producer, adding her musical performance, knowledge and influence to the production and marketing of the movie.

“The storytelling is hinged upon an unlikely pair, who meet each other at their lowest points and together create a magnificent never-heard-before ‘sound for the people’: the groundbreaking masterpiece ‘Messiah’, the annual global bestseller for close to 300 years,” Levitas said. “Tim Slover’s writing is populated by passionate, real-life experience in all its color and dirt, creating a riveting human story with surprising contemporary relevancy, universal human connectivity and spiritual uplift.”

“The King of Covent Garden” reunites Hopkins with Embankment, which backed and sold Florian Zeller’s “The Father,” for which he won his second Oscar in 2021.

“Hopkins and Handel are maestros of their art and together they create a joyous and uplifting cinematic event,” said Embankment co-founder Tim Haslam. “The ‘Hallelujah’ chorus is globally the most performed of choral favorites – perhaps a shared mindset of celebration. It features in a plethora of iconic entertainment, from ‘Baywatch’ to ‘The Simpsons,’ from ‘Runaway Bride’ to ‘Scrooged.’ In excess of 5 million people have seen a performance of ‘Messiah’ in The Royal Albert Hall alone. Throughout the U.S., there are over 800 performances per year. Handel’s music has been performed at every coronation of a British monarch since King George II.”

Hopkins is represented by UTA and Mitch Smelkinson at Goodman, Genow, Schenkman, Smelkinson and Christopher.