The Favourite is a 2018 period black comedy film directed by Yorgos Lanthimos and written by Deborah Davis and Tony McNamara. It is a co-production of the United Kingdom, Republic of Ireland and the United States. Set in early 18th-century England, the story examines the relationship between two cousins, Sarah, Duchess of Marlborough, and Abigail Masham, who later became Baroness Masham, vying to be Court favourites of Queen Anne ; it is loosely based on historical events. Filming took place at Hatfield House in Hertfordshire, and at Hampton Court Palace in Hampton Court, Surrey, between March and May 2017.
The film premiered at the 75th Venice International Film Festival on 30 August 2018, where it won the Grand Jury Prize and the Volpi Cup for Best Actress . It was released in the United States on 23 November 2018 by Fox Searchlight Pictures, and in the United Kingdom and the Republic of Ireland on 1 January 2019. It became a box-office success, grossing $95 million worldwide on a $15 million budget.
The Favourite received critical acclaim, with accolades for its screenplay, direction, acting, cinematography, music, costume design, and production values. It received numerous awards and nominations. Both Roma and The Favourite each received ten Academy Award nominations, with both films being at the top of the list for most highly nominated films for the 91st Academy Awards. The Favourite also won a leading seven BAFTA Awards and ten British Independent Film Awards. Colman won Best Actress at the Academy Awards, the Golden Globes, and the BAFTAs and the movie was ranked by the American Film Institute as one of the top 10 films of 2018.