Thursday 13 December 2018

Historian hits out at Saoirse Ronan's new film Mary, Queen of Scots biopic over inaccuracies

Saoirse Ronan as Mary, Queen of Scots (Working Titles Film)
Saoirse Ronan as Mary, Queen of Scots (Working Titles Film)
Sean O'Grady

Sean O'Grady

A British historian has hit out at the upcoming Mary, Queen of Scots biopic for being historically inaccurate.

The trailer for the film has been released and focuses on the rivalry between Mary, Queen of Scots, played by Saoirse Ronan, and her cousin Queen Elizabeth I, played by Margot Robbie.

Margot Robbie stars as Queen Elizabeth I (Parisa Tag/Focus Features)
Margot Robbie stars as Queen Elizabeth I (Parisa Tag/Focus Features)

Dr Estelle Paranque has said the film could mislead viewers, pointing to the scenes where Mary and Elizabeth meet, saying no such meeting ever took place.

"We have proof of that," she said. 

"We have letters of frustration of Mary and we have letters of Elizabeth not knowing what she should do or not do in that case."

Dr Paranque noted that the early friendship between the two women as depicted in the trailer also never happened, with Mary and Elizabeth being rivals from the start.

Mary had once claimed Elizabeth's throne as her own and was seen as more of a legitimate heir by many English Catholics at the time, as Elizabeth was a Protestant.

Saoirse has long been praised for her skill at adopting a variety of accents and she speaks in a Scottish one for her role as Mary Stuart.

But Dr Paranque said that the real Mary spoke with a French accent, as she was raised in France and spent most of her younger years there.

"She was raised in France and she was a de Guise sometimes more than she was a Stuart, I have to say," Dr Paranque told the Telegraph. 

"An historical fiction does not have to be 100pc accurate, however, I think when we know things that happened we have to keep it because otherwise where do we draw the line? 

"Why not have Mary kill Elizabeth? Why not change history? It is not an historical movie any more, it is just fiction." 

Mary, Queen of Scots will be released in the US in December and Ireland and the UK in January 2019.

WATCH: Saoirse Ronan and Margot Robbie face off in Mary Queen of Scots trailer

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