As filming begins on Josie Rourke’s Mary, Queen of Scots, a first look image of Saoirse Ronan as the fated Queen of Scotland has been released.

The adaptation of John Guy’s acclaimed biography My Heart is My Own: The Life of Mary Queen of Scots. Will see Ronan joined by Suicide Squad’s Margot Robbie as Mary’s cousin and murderer, Elizabeth I. Joining the ladies on the cast are Jack Lowden (Dunkirk, England is Mine), Joe Alwyn (The Sense of an Ending, Billy Lynn’s Long Halftime Walk), Martin Compston (Sweet Sixteen, “Line of Duty”) and Brendan Coyle (“Downton Abbey”, Me Before You).  Also featuring in the cast are David Tennant (“Doctor Who”, “Broadchurch”) and Guy Pearce (Memento, LA Confidential, The Adventures of Priscilla, Queen of the Desert).

Mary, Queen of Scots explores the turbulent life of the charismatic Mary Stuart. Queen of France at 16 and widowed at 18, Mary defies pressure to remarry. Instead, she returns to her native Scotland to reclaim her rightful throne. But Scotland and England fall under the rule of the compelling Elizabeth 1.  Each young Queen beholds her “sister” in fear and fascination. Rivals in power and in love, and female regents in a masculine world, the two must decide how to play the game of marriage versus independence. Determined to rule as much more than a figurehead, Mary asserts her claim to the English throne, threatening Elizabeth’s sovereignty. Betrayal, rebellion, and conspiracies within each court imperil both thrones – and change the course of history.

Josie Rourke, who makes her feature directorial debut with Mary, Queen of Scots, is also artistic director for The Donmar Warehouse. Producers on the feature include Les Misérables, Tim Bevan Eric Fellner and Debra Hayward. The Ides of March and House of Cards Beau Willimon has adapted the screenplay.

Mary, Queen of Scots