“Stalin would be loving this,” a Soviet Union political worker says in the trailer for The Death of Stalin. When a great leader falls, the fight for leadership begins.
IFC Films will distribute the upcoming comedy, The Death of Stalin, to America’s masses. The political satire feature film was written and directed by Armando Iannucci, who created HBO’s Veep out of his British political satire The Thick Of It. IFC Films retrieved the North American rights at the Berlin Film Festival’s European Film Market.
The Death of Stalin trailer introduces all the key players in the game of succession to the Soviet Union’s leadership. The deputy, the politician, the son, the general, the spymaster – snaky little shits, all of them, but most can run and plot at the same time. It’s very loosely based on true events.
Here’s the official synopsis:
“The internal political landscape of 1950’s Soviet Russia takes on darkly comic form in a new film by Emmy award-winning and Oscar-nominated writer/director Armando Iannucci. In the days following Stalin’s collapse, his core team of ministers tussle for control; some want positive change in the Soviet Union, others have more sinister motives. Their one common trait? They’re all just desperately trying to remain alive.”
You can watch the trailer here:
The Death of Stalin is based on Fabien Nury’s French graphic novel A Morte De Stalin.
The Death of Stalin features an all-star ensemble cast that includes Steve Buscemi (Boardwalk Empire, Monsters Inc.) as Khrushchev, Timothy Dalton (Penny Dreadful) as Zhukov, Simon Russell Beale (Into the Woods), Rupert Friend (Homeland), Jason Isaacs (Harry Potter movies), Michael Palin (Monty Python’s Flying Circus, A Fish Called Wanda, Three Men in a Boat), and Jeffrey Tambor (Transparent) as Malenkov. Adrian McLoughlin plays Stalin.
Stalin’s death is one of history’s great mysteries and a favorite of conspiracy theorists, some of whom believe he was poisoned under the orders of KGB chief Lavrenty Beria to prevent World War 3. Beria was executed on espionage charges months later.
France’s Gaumont is financing and selling The Death of Stalin, which is being produced by Nicolas Duval-Adassovsky, Laurent Zeitoun and Yann Zenou for France’s Quad Films and Main Journey (The Intouchables, Ballerina), along with Kevin Loader (The Lady in the Van). The project will be overseen by Gaumont’s international sales exec Cecile Gaget.
British writer and comedian Iannucci exited HBO’s Veep after four seasons as executive producer. He is also the creator of The Day Today and The Thick of It. Iannucci directed the films In the Loop and Alan Partridge.
The Death of Stalin will be screened at the Toronto film festival in September. It will hit UK cinemas on October 20. The release date for U.S. theaters has not yet been released. It’s a state secret.
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