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Game of Thrones' Opponent is Here: BBC Announces New Historical Drama, The Last Kingdom; Things to Expect

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By jaskiran kaur | July 15, 2014 11:52 AM EST

Based on Bernard Cornwell's bestselling historical drama The Last Kingdom, BBC along with "Downtown Abbey" producer Carnival Films is set to introduce a new show with the same name.

On Wednesday, BBC America made the big announcement of the show which is speculated to rival HBO's "Game of Thrones". Here are several details about the show, as revealed in the press release by the channel.

"The Last Kingdom" will showcase stories based on Bernard Cornwell's novel narrating the history of the Saxons dating back to the year 872. It was the era when several kingdoms, big or small, came under the invasion of Vikings. During the time of major crisis, the kingdom of Wessex stood alone, resisting the control of Vikings. At that time, the great Kingdom of Wessex was led by King Alfred the Great.

The show tells the tale of the hero called Uhtred Ragnarson. He was born as a Saxon, but after being kidnapped, he was brought up by a Viking man. His father taught him to be a skilled warrior. However, when he grows up he finds himself in the most awkward quandary. He must side with either of the clans. The story will put to test his loyalties when he is compelled to support and fight the war for either Saxons or Vikings.

"The Last Kingdom" is a "show full of heroic deeds and epic battles" notes the press release. It will also reportedly exhibit "thematic depth that embraces politics, religion, warfare, courage, love, loyalty and our universal search for identity."  

Cornwell's Saxon novels combine historical figures and events with fiction in an utterly compelling way," Gareth Neame said. He happens to be one of the executive producers of the show alongside Nigel Marchant and Stephen Butchard.

"In part the epic quest of our hero Uhtred, it is also a fascinating re-telling of the tale of King Alfred the Great and how he united the many separate kingdoms on this island into what would become England," Gareth Neame added.  

The production of the new historical drama is yet to begin. The filming process is scheduled for fall this year. According to the press release, "The Last Kingdom" will feature eight episodes lasting sixty minutes on BBC Two.

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