Chamberlain to star in TV Blackbeard

Just before
moviegoers get their second dose of Pirates of the
, Hallmark Channel will bring TV viewers
its own swashbuckling action in the form of a four-hour
miniseries titled Blackbeard. Angus Macfadyen,
Richard Chamberlain, Stacy Keach, and Rachel Ward have been
tapped to star in the miniseries, which is set to set
sail next June—just ahead of the July 7 launch
of Disney's Johnny Depp Pirates sequel. Macfadyen
will take on the title role in the Caribbean-set
story, which is a slightly fictionalized take on the
tales of the pirate Blackbeard. Shooting will take place in

The miniseries
reunites Chamberlain and Ward, who costarred in the 1983
ABC miniseries The Thorn Birds. The openly gay
Chamberlain's recent TV credits include ABC's The
Drew Carey Show
and CBS's Touched by an
. Ward's recent credits include Hallmark Channel's
miniseries Johnson County War and the Showtime
lesbian-themed family movie Bobbie's Girl.
(Kimberly Speight, via Reuters)