Starz’s “The Serpent Queen” is a period drama tv series created by Justin Hayth, based on the 2004 book “Catherine de Medici: Renaissance Queen of France” by Leonie Fried. It follows the life of Catherine de Medici, an Italian noblewoman born into the Medici family who married as an orphaned teenager, expected to produce an heir and bring a hefty dowry. However, she discovers that her husband is already in love with an older woman. Things get even more complicated for her when she finds out she can’t conceive children.
Even after all these challenges, Catherine somehow manages to maintain her marriage and rule for three decades. By breaking the fourth wall, she lets viewers into her story and provides an immersive viewing experience that keeps us hooked on the series. Moreover, the 16th-century setting and the backdrop of great halls and palaces make you curious to know about the filming locations of “The Serpent Queen.”
The Serpent Queen Tv Series Filming Locations
“The Serpent Queen” is being filmed in France and Italy, specifically in Amboise, Marseille, Chambord, Villandry, Chenonceaux, and Castel Gandolfo. Principal photography for the inaugural iteration of the historic series reportedly began in April 2021 and wrapped up in September of that year. Even though Season 1 was filmed during the Covid-19 pandemic, it worked to the studio’s advantage, as showrunner Erwin Stoff shared in a September 2022 interview with Cinemablend.
Stoff said: “The funny thing is that even though filming during Covid was difficult, it was actually very good for us. Because all those places were places that no one ever shot… because they are usually crowded with tourists. So there were no tourists due to Covid and they were in desperate need of money. So we actually had to shoot in the rooms, corridors, and gardens where Catherine lived. So it was actually an incredibly lucky break for us and for the show.” Now, without further ado, let’s tell you all about the specific locations featured in The Serpent Queen show!
The team of ‘The Serpent Queen’ is apparently camping in Marseille, France’s second most populous city, to shoot some sequences for the series. Located on the shores of the Gulf of Lion near the mouth of the Rhône River, Marseille has its own unique culture that sets the city apart from the rest of the nation. It is also considered a regional cultural and entertainment center and home to many historical and maritime museums.
Some important scenes for “The Serpent Queen” take place in Amboise, a town in central France. Located in the Indre-et-Loire department, it is famous for the Clos Lucé estate, where the legendary Leonardo da Vinci lived. In addition, there is a historical fountain from the 20th century right in front of the marketplace, which was made by Max Ernst and attracts many tourists.
To depict the gigantic castles common in the 16th century, the cast and crew of “The Serpent Queen” use real historical castles in various locations throughout France. Several key sequences are shot on location around the Château de Chambord in the commune of Chambord and the Château de Chenonceau in the commune of Chenonceaux. In addition, the Château de Villandry at 3 Rue Principale in Villandry serves as another prominent production site for The Serpent Queen series.
For the purpose of the lens, the production team of ‘The Serpent Queen’ even stops at Castel Gandolfo, a town in the Lazio region of Italy. In particular, they use the premises of the Papal Palace Castel Gandolfo in Piazza della Libertà to film scenes taking place in Italy. In the aforementioned interview, Liv Hill (Catherine) also shared her experience filming in the actual locations where her character once lived.
The actress said: “…Then when we went to Italy for five days to film, we were the first people ever to film in the Papal Palace. So it was wonderful. That was probably the highlight for me. I’ve never been on such luxurious sets before, and I probably never would have if I wasn’t an actress.”