Archive for April, 2010

The casting of Jane Seymour was both easy and difficult.  Easy, because of the amount of young blonde actresses out there, which in turn made it difficult to choose which ones I liked best!

Jane Seymour was Henry VIII’s third wife.  There is some debate as to how Jane felt about being Anne Boleyn’s replacement.  After all, she married the King of England the day after he had the former queen and her predecessor beheaded.  Was she a scared, young girl trapped by her family’s ambitions or did she play an active  role in replacing Anne?  There is one thing I do believe to be very true.  Jane went out of her way to be the exact opposite of Anne Boleyn.  I think it was a smart act of self preservation on her part to be so submissive to Henry.   Jane was said to be very beautiful, with light coloring…..blonde hair, light colored skin and blue eyes.

Here is an actual pic/painting of Jane Seymour:

Here are the actresses I picked to portray Jane Seymour.

My first choice is Annabelle Wallis.  I actually surprised myself by choosing her, because when I first saw her in the promo photos, I was not happy.  Once I saw her in “The Tudors”, however, I realized she was very right for the role.   She plays a more gentle, yet strong Jane, who is caught between keeping her head and staying true to her beliefs.

My second choice is Kate Bosworth….I think she could do the role justice and portray a more innocent version of Jane.

My third choice is Reese Witherspoon.  I think she could take Jane in a different direction, more of a strong side to Jane.

My last choice is Sienna Miller.  I think she would do a good job of portraying both the submissive and the strong sides of Jane.

Henry VIII considered Jane his “true and most beloved wife” even after he married other women.  In Tudor paintings, he had her painted next to him, instead of the current queen.  She was the only queen anyone ever saw King Henry mourn.   She was never officially crowned queen.

Jane’s choice of badge was a phoenix rising from a castle with Tudor roses.  Her motto was “Bound to obey and serve”.  She was the only Tudor queen to give Henry VIII a legitimate male heir that lived past infancy.  Her son, Edward VI went on to become King after Henry’s death in 1547 with her brother, Edward Seymour acting as Lord Protector.


I am excited to talk about the casting of Anne Boleyn because she is my favorite of Henry’s wives.  Many people think she was a horrible person who deserved to die, a harlot, a heretic…..but I really don’t pay attention to any of that.  There were other things that made up Anne Boleyn and I chose women that I thought would represent what she was historically known to look like.  Paintings and reports on Anne Boleyn describe her as an unusual creature, with olive toned skin and eyes so dark they were nearly black, and long dark hair.  Women with fair hair and skin in Tudor times were considered far more beautiful than “The Brunette” as Thomas Wyatt referred to her in one of his poems.

Here is an actual pic/portrait of Anne Boleyn:

Here are the actresses I picked to portray Anne Boleyn.

My first choice is Natalie Dormer.  Natalie played Anne Boleyn on Showtime’s “The Tudors” and it is my opinion that no one has ever done Anne Boleyn justice the way that she has.  She perfectly portrayed all the elements that made up who Anne was, and rose to the challenge of going from a young confident girl, to a woman in love, to a woman in fear for her very life.  That is a wide spectrum of emotions to go through in just two seasons!  But, she succeeded beautifully!!!!  The only thing I would complain about if anything is that Natalie’s eyes are blue and not the sparkling almost black that Anne’s eyes actually were.  All in all, for me, when it comes to the role of Anne Boleyn, there will never be anyone who “does it” for me like Natalie Dormer does.  As my best friend says, “She NAILS that role!”

I am posting more pics, cause I just LOVE her!

My second choice is Eliza Dushku….. I think her eyes could pull off the Anne Boleyn look and she has that sultry, but subtle draw to her.

My last choice is Rachel Bilson, although I am not completely sure about her.  She may be a bit too wholesome looking, but I thought I would post one of her anyways….

As usual, both history and movies always need a “villain”, and that person for King Henry’s subjects was Anne Boleyn.  Henry was so taken with Anne, he even wrote her love letters (Henry hated writing letters and seldom did to anyone else), one of which is still in existence today.    She was an intriguing character and I look forward to writing much more about her.

Anne’s choice of badge as queen was the crowned falcon with Tudor roses and her motto was “The Most Happy”.  Although her reign as queen did not last long, the effects of her time on the throne changed religion in England forever.  Her daughter, Elizabeth I, went on to become queen and to have one of the most successful reigns in British history.

While reading through some posts I subscribe to on my Live Journal, I came across an entry where someone had put together some pics of the real historical pictures of the the wives of Henry VIII, and then posted some pics of actresses they would like to see cast as those people.  I thought it was a pretty neat idea and wanted to post my own version of it!  I thought I would start with the first wife of Henry VIII… the dignified, devout and “Queen of Hearts”, Catherine of Aragon.

I decided to start with a young version.  If I were to ever have my “own” movie or series of the Tudor Dynasty, I would want to start with Henry as a child  and work my way up to his marriage to Catherine, so we would have to start with a “young version” of her.  Something to note… it drives me SUPER crazy that EVERY movie I have seen where there is a portrayal of Catherine of Aragon, she has dark hair.  This is NOT accurate!  Catherine of Aragon had a light auburn to blonde colored hair with blue eyes.  NOT ALL SPANISH people have dark hair and dark eyes!!!  Sorry, but this element alone drives me nuts and makes me want to shake the casting directors at times.

Something to also note:  I am going mostly by looks here and not how these actresses happen to perform.

Here is an actual pic of a young Catherine of Aragon:

So here are the actresses I picked to portray a young Catherine of Aragon… please keep in mind that I only used a limited amount of choices, as it could have taken me forever to research and gather pics if I used a broader spectrum.

My first choice is Scarlett Johansson

My next choice would be Kirsten Dunst

And my last choice is Christina Hendricks

These girls all have blue eyes, they have blonde or auburn hair and could definitely be made to look like the portrait you see of the real Catherine.  Catherine was said to be shorter, with a curvier shape.  Kirsten Dunst isn’t as curvy as the other two actresses, but her face has a full roundness and she is fairly short.  In my opinion, it would take little effort to make any of these three women resemble Catherine of Aragon.

Now, on to the older version of Catherine of Aragon.  In most movies or series about King Henry VIII, the only version you get to see of Catherine is the older version.  The actresses I chose are ones I thought could do justice to the role.

Here is an actual painting/pic of an older Catherine of Aragon

My first choice is Meryl Streep

My second choice is Kate Winslet

My last choice strays from what Catherine is described to look like (and the point I was originally trying to make) but I figured, what the hell?  She did such a great job portraying her on Showtime’s The Tudors, I really had to add her.  Maria Doyle Kennedy

I really think the various series and movies on The Tudors Dynasty have done an injustice to Queen Catherine of Aragon.  Her life was much more interesting than her divorce from Henry.  She was descended from a very long line of kings and queens, she witnessed the surrender of The Moors in Granada, and also witnessed Columbus embarking on his first voyage to the New World.

Catherine of Aragon’s choice of badge was the pomegranate and her motto was “Humble and Loyal”.  She was very much the ideal queen and was dearly loved by the people of England.

For giggles….

I found this pic online today….

Being that I have an extreme love for shoes, and a fondness for the movie, I just HAD to post this!  Gotta love it!  Which reminds me, it’s been FAR too long since I have gone shoe shopping……

The very much anticipated (for myself, anyways) Season 4 of Showtimes’ The Tudors officially began on April 11th.  I have to say, that so far, it has been well worth the wait!

The first episode opens with King Henry VIII already secretly married to Catherine Howard, who is a mere 17 years of age.  Although I at first felt strongly that they should have casted a prettier girl as the new young queen, I do feel that Tamzin Merchant has wonderfully captured the ignorance and naivete that was a large facet of Catherine’s personality.  You very quickly see that here is a young, uneducated girl, playing dress up and enjoying the lavish gifts and attention without realizing the very real responsibilities of being the Queen of England.

Unfortunately, not everyone at court is as happy as Henry and his new queen.  Charles Brandon seems very melancholy and distracted, not at all what he was in the last three seasons.  You can see that the wear and tear of being “his majesty’s most humble servant” has taken it’s toll.  His wife no longer resides with him or cares for him as she once did and you can see that it has taken some of the charm out of life for him.  It’s really sad to see him in that way.

The Lady Mary is also quite unhappy.  Her father marrying once again has turned her world upside down and it’s very heartbreaking to see how it all affects her.  It seems the only true friend she has in the world at this point is Eustace Chapuys, the Spanish Ambassador who has looked after her since her separation from her mother, Queen Catherine of Aragon.  At least we do know from history that things do get better for the poor girl for a while, once Henry marries Catherine Parr.

There are many new characters in this new season, such as Henry Howard – Earl of Surrey, Thomas Culpepper, French Ambassador Marillac,  Joan Bulmer, Francis Dereham and let’s not forget Catherine Parr!  I am very interested to see how Michael Hirst plays this season out for the fans.  I know there has been talk of all of his past wives appearing to him in the final episodes, confronting him, rather, and I VERY much look forward to seeing that!  I happened to really enjoy Natalie Dormer’s portrayal of Anne Boleyn and look forward to hearing what her “ghost” has to say to Henry in his final moments!

All in all, seeing the first episode only whetted my appetite for even more of the show.  This season will be very bittersweet to me, as it is the final one.  While I am eagerly awaiting more episodes, part of me wants it to drag out so it’s not over too quickly.  Whatever will I watch when it’s over??????

To be continued…. Thoughts on episode 2 to come…..

Interesting find…

Over the last four years, I have been increasingly involved in educating myself about GLBT rights, the GLBT history, Leather history, and more.  Some of the things I read make me want to promptly take my ass to law school so I can be a lawyer for the Human Rights Campaign and anyone else who needs to have their voices heard with regards to this topic.  I am very intensely passionate about my gay, lesbian, bi and trans friends having the same rights as everyone else.  Just because they choose to live differently than others is no excuse to treat them as if they don’t matter and shouldn’t have a say in what happens in their own lives.  I recently found this site:

They have a lot of interesting articles, different takes on things and make an attempt to educate people about what’s really going on in the world and helps to open the eyes of those who don’t realize that, yes, indeed, there are people that are being treated worse than dogs, having their families and possessions taken from them unfairly all because there are some out there who don’t like or don’t agree with how they live.  But, this particular site does it with a fairly good sense of humor about things.  Take a look if you are at all interested in getting better educated about the GLBT communities and their causes.

I just watched the trailer for “Sex and the City 2” and I have to say, I am super excited!!!!  Set to the music of Jay-Z’s “Empire State of Mind,” it instantly brings you to Manhattan with the girls, wondering how you waited so long for the sequel in the first place!!!  Check it out here!

I have been a dedicated fan of the show since day one of it’s first season on HBO and I am amazed at how it just keeps getting better!!!!!  I am excited to see what marriage is like for Carrie and “Big” two years later…. to see how motherhood has changed Charlotte, to see what’s new with Miranda, and of course, I can’t wait to see Samantha’s new escapades!!!  ALWAYS entertaining!

I have to weigh in on the writers bringing Aidan back.  I am FREAKED out by this!  I really love the relationship they have written for Carrie and “Big” and I am only hoping that by bringing Aidan into the mix, it makes Carrie appreciate her relationship with “Big” all the more.  But, who knows?  Maybe they are setting us up for a third movie???

All I can say for certain is, “Bring it on!”  This new movie can’t come out soon enough for me!!!

For about a decade now, I have been fascinated by the all too brief history of what was Anne Boleyn’s life.  I have a penchant for learning all I can about strong, independent, ground-breaking women throughout history and when I started to read about her, I was immediately enraptured.

One reason for my fascination is that she was a woman that everyone loved to hate.   There are many, many biased accounts and myths surrounding Anne, most of which are derogatory, and most have been proved to be false.  Another factor is her strength and ambition that led her to become nobility in her own right, and later, Queen of England.  She is also credited with changing the face of religion and faith in England forever, AND she gave birth to Elizabeth I, a woman who would go on to have one of the most successful reigns in the history of the British Monarchy.  Anne was not simply satisfied with her lot, and she climbed higher than even her father had imagined she would.

There is a quote from the beginning of the Showtime series, The Tudors that is a great way to look at anything historical.  “You think you know a story, but you only know how it ends.   To get to the heart of the story, you have to go back to the beginning.”  I find that quote to be so true of Anne Boleyn’s life in many ways.  Most people only know how her story ends.  Her grand exit from this world by beheading.  But, as it turns out, this woman had a more interesting life than most people realize.

There are many debates as to the kind of woman Anne Boleyn really was.  She has been brought back to life in several movies and TV series, most of which portray her as a scheming social climber.  But, if that is all there was to her, how did she manage to attain the crown against all odds?  How did she persuade Henry to break with Rome?  Such questions and many more are what lead me to write about Anne.  There are many, many questions still left unanswered about her life and death, but within this blog I intend to at least weigh in my sentiments and knowledge on the subject.   I am sure I will consume many posts with my ponderings about  a woman who helped to bring about the beginning of the English Reformation.

*****Please note: any resources I use for my blogs about Anne Boleyn will be listed at the bottom of my posts.

To be continued……

Bambi on ice…

Or at least, that’s how I am feeling about WordPress right now!  Didn’t realize it was so complicated to personalize my stuff on here!  A friend told me that there is “WordPress for Dummies” book out there.. I am going to HAVE to buy it!  It drives me crazy when I can’t figure something out on my own!


New to this WordPress thing.  Just seeing how I like it.  So far, it’s a little more complicated than the other blogging sites I have used, but I assume I will get used to it like everything else.  We shall see!

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