Netflix to shoot contemporary Anna Karenina series in Russia

This will be the streaming giant’s first Russian original drama series

By Chris Evans 26 May 2021

Netflix to shoot contemporary Anna Karenina series in Russia
Anna Khodchenkova. Credit: Netflix

Netflix is set to make a contemporary version of the classic Tolstoy novel Anna Karenina as its first-ever Russian original series.

Anna K will be set in modern-day Russia, where socialite Anna Karenina, the wife of the soon-to-become governor of St. Petersburg, embarks on a love affair with Vronsky, the heir of an aluminium empire. Their affair quickly careens out of control, threatening the delicate balance of their familial bonds and social relationships.

The series is set and will be shot in cosmopolitan Moscow and historic St. Petersburg.

Roman Kantor, the writer behind hit Russian series To the Lake, which airs on Netflix worldwide, will write the modern-day adaptation, and Svetlana Khodchenkova (Tinker Tailor Soldier Spy) will play the titular lead.

“To bring Anna Karenina into 21st-century Russia and to simultaneously introduce her to the whole world in her own language (and many others) through the miracle of Netflix is a dream come true for me,” said Kantor. “Quite literally so, as the idea for this tv series came to me in a dream and I have been chasing it ever since.”

1-2-3 Production, the Moscow-based outfit behind To The Lake, will produce Anna K. Kantor will take on directing duties together with Valeriy Fedorovich, Evgeniy Nikishov, Natasha Merkulova, and Aleksey Chupov. Kantor, Fedorovich, Nikishov, and Sergey Kornikhin of 1-2-3 will produce. 

“We are incredibly proud to announce our first Russian series with 1-2-3 Production,” said Netflix’s director of original series Michael Azzolino in a statement. “The talented team of writers, directors, and producers have crafted an imaginative and immersive series. We are excited to help bring their vision for this much-admired story to our members in Russia and the world.”

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