RuPaul's Drag Race UK: Queens and cast rumours, release date, guest judges and all the latest news
19 July 2019, 11:57 | Updated: 21 August 2019, 15:54
RuPaul and Michelle Visage are bringing Drag Race to the UK (finally!), and here's all the details you need to know about it, hunty...
After yeaaaars of wishing and hoping and tweeting about it, RuPaul's Drag Race is finally coming to the UK! Yes, ladies, a British version of the show is officially happening and will be coming to our screens at some point in 2019.
It was first announced in December 2018 that Drag Race UK would be starting its engines and, in 2019, it was revealed that RuPaul would be acting as the head judge.
So far, details are pretty thin on the ground as everything is being kept under wraps for the big RuVeal (as they always are) but in the past few weeks, we've had one celebrity judge confirmed and have heard some very spicy rumours about which UK Queens will be taking part...
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So, kitty gurls, from the confirmed news to the rumours about judges and Queens, here's everything we know so far about RuPaul's Drag Race UK...
When does RuPaul's Drag Race UK start?
There is no current confirmed air date for Drag Race UK. Filming for Drag Race UK reportedly took place in March 2019, with both Michelle and RuPaul spotted in London. The show has now wrapped filming and we can probably hope to see it on our screens at some point in 2019.
How can I watch RuPaul's Drag Race UK?
Drag Race UK will air on BBC Three, which is now an online only channel. You can either watch BBC Three online here, or on iPlayer on your Smart TV.
How many episodes of RuPaul's Drag Race UK will there be?
There will be eight episodes of the series for you to gag over.
Who will be on the judges' panel?
As always, Mama Ru will be returning as the main judge with always flawless Michelle Visage sat beside him. In an interview with The Sun, RuPaul added: "I am beyond excited to celebrate the massive charisma, uniqueness, nerve and talent of the Queen’s queens. And before anyone asks, yes, we would be thrilled to have Meghan Markle join us, as we are already preparing a ‘Royal-Mother-To-Be’ runway challenge.”
Chat show legends and national treasures Graham Norton and Alan Carr will also be joining the panel. They will be playing alternating roles on the main judging panel alongside Ru and Michelle, like Ross Mathews and Carson Kressley do in the US version of the show.
For the finale, both Graham and Alan will appear together on the panel.
A LOOK from Drag Race UK. Gagged. pic.twitter.com/fbrp4qaFMg— Lee Dawson (@LeeDawsonVE) April 6, 2019
Who are the celebrity guest judges?
A handful of guest judges have been confirmed for the UK series. Here is the list so far:
- Maisie Williams (actor, Game of Thrones)
- Geri Horner (from the Spice Girls)
- Michaela Coel (actor, Chewing Gum)
- Jade Thirlwall (from Little Mix)
- Andrew Garfield (actor)
- Twiggy (model)
- Cheryl (popstar and reality show judge)
Speaking of her role as guest judge on the show, Maisie Williams said: “What I love the most about drag is the story of the drag queen behind the facade.
“I think that so much of drag comes from a place of real pain and seeing how that transforms into a character is so interesting to me. I love that about art and about drag.”
Rumours about who else could be joining the panel throughout the series include pop star Cheryl, morning show host Lorraine Kelly and other Spice Girls legend Emma Bunton, who has already appeared on the US version of the show. (If the rumours are true, it sounds like her and Geri will be appearing in two separate episodes.)
Alan Carr also appeared to confirm that former drag legend Paul O'Grady (who used to perform as Lily Savage) would be joining the panel as a guest judge but then seemed to backtrack on his comments. Later, Paul’s rep shut down the rumour saying: “Paul has a full diary and isn’t on the panel.”
Who are the confirmed Queens?
It's confirmed! The first UK series of Drag Race will star The Vivienne, Vinegar Strokes, Baga Chipz, Blu Hydrangea, Sum Ting Wong, Scaredy Kat, Crystal, Cheryl Hole, Divina De Campo and Gothy Kendoll. All of the confirmed Queens are set to make their first official appearance at Manchester Pride on Saturday 24 August.
We can't wait to see how this turns out...
“Drag helped that 12-year-old me finally live out his dream.”— RuPaul's Drag Race UK (@dragraceukbbc) August 21, 2019
Sum Ting Wong is the Brummy queen who’s ready to S.L.A.Y the live vocals and reclaim and recycle your problematic jokes. #DragRaceUK pic.twitter.com/lyeAglvQlN
What will the format of Drag Race UK be? Will it be the same as the US version?
By the looks of things, most of the set up will be the same as the US version of Drag Race. A casting call was sent out looking for people to be part of the Pit Crew (although it was widely criticised for 'body-shaming') and as always will there will likely be a mini-challenge, a maxi-challenge, a main stage runway and a lip sync for your life.
While speaking to PopBuzz, Michelle Visage played along and gave her thoughts on which characters and celebrities she'd like to see on a potential Snatch Game panel, so we could be seeing a pretty gag-worthy bunch of impressions soon.
None of this has been confirmed yet though, we'll just have to wait and see what they've got in store for us and the Queens.