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‘Loveless’ Helmer Andrey Zvyagintsev Developing Russian-Language Drama With Paramount

‘Loveless’ is nominated for a best foreign-language Oscar

Paramount Television is developing a thriller from Andrey Zvyagintsev, the Academy Award-nominated director’s first television project.

Set in Moscow and filmed in Russian, the as-yet-unnamed project is based on an original idea from Zvyagintsev and Oleg Negin, who wrote “Loveless,” which Zvyagintsev directed. The film received the 2017 Cannes Film Festival Jury Prize and is up for best foreign-language Oscar.

Alexander Rodnyansky will executive produce the new TV drama, reuniting the trio behind acclaimed Russian movies “Leviathan” and “Elena.” There are no plot details available yet beyond the Russian setting, but Zvyagintsev said: “I believe that we have a very powerful human story to tell for the international audience.”

Paramount Television’s slate includes “Jack Ryan” for Amazon, “13 Reasons Why” for Netflix, and “Catch 22” for Hulu.

Zvyagintsev has emerged as an art-house and critical favorite for grim but effective works such as “Leviathan” and “The Return.” Variety’s review of “Loveless,” which won the award for best film at the BFI London Film Festival and opened in the U.S. on Feb. 16, described it as a “quietly commanding film” that is “rock-solid yet leisurely in its observance, grounded yet metaphorical.”

Producer Rodnyansky said the appeal of “Loveless,” which centers on the disappearance of a young boy whose parents are splitting up, extended beyond Russia. “The story of human selfishness is universal,” Rodnyansky told Variety. “It is much more than a Russian tale of a couple going through a painful divorce.”

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