Comedy About Egypt’s Most Famous Pharaoh In The Works

Cleao is a comedy about Cleopatra being developed by the creators of Jane the Virgin for Peacock.

By TeeJay Small | Published

cleopatra egyptian tunnel

Sometimes it feels like the more things change, the more they stay the same. That seems to be the mission statement of the upcoming Cleo, an hour long dramedy premiering on Peacock which will center on Egypt’s hardest working Pharaoh in history, Cleopatra. Reports from Deadline explain that the show is currently under development from Jane The Virgin showrunner Jennie Snyder Urman and writer Jessica Runck.

Cleo is said to be a dramatic comedy which focuses on the day to day life of Cleopatra as she struggles to navigate life amidst the chaos of ruling the Two Lands. The show is sure to be packed with the acerbic wit viewers have come to expect from Jane The Virgin writers and developers, as the show will focus on portraying themes of feminism, toxic masculinity, and leadership.

Jane The Virgin ran on The CW from 2014 to 2019 and displayed a number of groundbreaking feminist themes during its 5 season run. The show starred Gina Rodriguez as the titular Jane, and centered on her struggle coming to terms with motherhood after a series of incredible circumstances lead to her becoming pregnant through artificial insemination by accident. While Cleo is set to air on Peacock, the show will be produced by CBS studios as part of an ongoing deal with the series creators.

From what little information is available about the show at this time, we can surmise that Cleo will feature a comedic but serious tone, centered around Cleopatra’s struggle to be taken seriously as a ruler, often forced to resort to dulling her intelligence to earn the respect of the less qualified men around her. In history, Cleopatra came to be a highly respected ruler, and was ultimately the final Pharaoh of the land, with the Roman Empire seizing control of the region after her death in 30 BC.

Elizabeth Taylor in Cleopatra (1963)

While rumblings of the show are still early and the casting process likely hasn’t begun, we’re sure the search for a proper Cleopatra actress will be lengthy and difficult, as the role will require a heft of gravitas to carry the show. With the accolades of the Peabody award winning writers, Cleo is sure to be in good hands, given the importance of the true historical story regarding the leaders’ epic rule.

Before joining forces with Jennie Snyder Urman to develop Cleo, Jessica Runck served as a consulting producer on The Way Home, an Andie MacDowell led show on the Hallmark channel which centered on three generations of independent women on a fulfilling search to create a new lane for themselves. The feminist themes of both The Way Home and Jane The Virgin are sure to come into play during the tenure of Cleo, bringing the patriarchal structure of ancient Egypt to task.

For now, we’ll have to wait and see what comes next. Be sure to tune in to Giant Freakin’ Robot for updates regarding casting and all other pop culture news! With Cleo still under active development, we’ve got our ears to the streets to see what the talented and award winning writers cook up.