Catherine Zeta-Jones to star in Facebook dark comedy Queen America

Catherine Zeta-Jones arriving for the 2018 Golden Globe awards in Beverly Hills, California. PHOTO: AFP

NEW YORK (AFP) - British Oscar winner Catherine Zeta-Jones will star in the dark comedy Queen America, the first major series produced by Facebook, which is seeking a foothold in the uber-competitive market for original content.

The sultry 48-year-old actress, who took home an Oscar in 2003 for Chicago, confirmed her jump to the small screen - fittingly - in a Facebook post.

The news was first reported by Hollywood industry outlet Deadline.

"So excited about my next project!" wrote Zeta-Jones. "I think you're going to love it!"

Queen America takes a look at the cutthroat world of beauty pageants in America.

Zeta-Jones stars as ruthless coach Vicki Ellis, who is in high demand from girls and women hoping to be the next Miss America.

The 10 half-hour episodes will debut on Facebook's relatively new video platform Watch, according to Deadline.

In September, Facebook debuted Strangers.

Then in late April, it launched Skam Austin, an adaptation of a Norwegian programme.

It has also ordered a half-hour dramedy series starring US actress Elizabeth Olsen.

But snapping up Zeta-Jones - who is also a Tony winner for A Little Night Music - indicates a turning point for the world's largest social network in its efforts to offer original content to its two billion users.

Last year, Zeta-Jones played Olivia de Havilland in the FX series Feud: Bette And Joan.

Facebook did not respond to AFP requests for further comment on the project.

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