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The Lost King: release date, plot, cast and everything we know

Sally Hawkins as Philippa Langley reading a book outside Edinburgh castle.
The Lost King is fronted by award-winning actress Sally Hawkins. (Image credit: Pathé UK)

The Lost King is an upcoming film that tells the extraordinary story of how an amateur historian called Philippa Langley battled against all odds to arrange the search for England's notorious king Richard III, whose remains were discovered in a car park in Leicester.

The comedy-drama reunites the creative team behind the hit film Philomena, with director Stephen Frears and writers Steve Coogan and Jeff Pope, while Sally Hawkins, Harry Lloyd and Steve take on leading roles.

Steve said: “It’s been wonderful to reunite with Stephen and Jeff to bring this extraordinary story to cinemas. Philippa Langley's passion, hard work and determination literally changed history, and we all felt it was important that her and Richard III’s story was told.”

Here's everything we know about The Lost King...


When will The Lost King be released?

The Lost King will be in UK cinemas on Friday, October 7, 2022. We don't have a US release date as of yet.

What happens in The Lost King?

Makers the BBC say about the plot: "In 2012, having been lost for over 500 years, the remains of King Richard III were discovered beneath a car park in Leicester. The search had been orchestrated by an amateur historian, Philippa Langley, whose unrelenting research had been met with incomprehension by her friends and family and with scepticism by experts and academics.

"The Lost King is the life-affirming true story of a woman who refused to be ignored and who took on the country's most eminent historians, forcing them to think again about one of the most controversial kings in England's history."

Sally Hawkins as Philippa Langley with knights on horses

Philippa's theories were doubted by experts. (Image credit: Pathé UK)

Who is in the cast of The Lost King?

The Lost King features a star-studded cast with Oscar nominee and Golden Globe winner Sally Hawkins (The Shape of Water) as Philippa Langley, Steve Coogan (Stan & Ollie) as her husband, John Langley and Harry Lloyd (The Theory of Everything) as Richard III.

Other names amongst the cast are James Fleet, John-Paul Hurley, Phoebe Pryce, Benjamin Scanlan, James Rottger and more.

Who was Richard III?

Richard III was the King of England from 1483 to 1485 and has often been portrayed as a ruthless and bloodthirsty tyrant in literature — most famously by Shakespeare — and films.

He was killed in The Battle of Bosworth at the age of 32, which was the last significant battle of The War of the Roses.

A groundbreaking discovery was made in 2012 when his remains were found under a car park in Leicester and has since helped discover new research about the medieval king.

Is there a trailer?

There's currently no trailer out for this film, but we'll update this guide as soon as one has been released!

Grace Morris
Grace Morris

Grace is a digital writer with, where she writes series guides for must-watch shows and the latest TV news. She graduated from Anglia Ruskin University in 2020 with a degree in Writing and Film Studies, which only made her love for creative writing, film and TV grow stronger.

You'll usually find her watching the drama unfold in the latest reality series and much-loved soaps (usually with chocolate by her side!). Grace also likes to explore new places with her friends and family and, of course, watch and read about the latest films and TV series.