Armando Iannucci, creator of In the Loop and Veep, has brought his acid wit and dark comedic sensibilities to another nation: Russia. His new film, The Death of Stalin, follows the chaos and jockeying for power that took place after the death of the authoritative leader in 1953. Because it’s Iannucci, though, the movie also looks incredibly funny as it satirizes both the egos and the fear that permeated that era. And, in what is actually a pretty smart move (in my opinion), Iannucci also allows each of his actors to keep their native accents and dialects, which means we aren’t made to suffer throughout outrageous attempts at Slavic cadence or the typical fall-back to everyone just sounding posh and English.
The movie stars a fantastic cast that includes Jeffrey Tambor, Steve Buscemi, Michael Palin, Paddy Considine, Andrea Riseborough, Rupert Friend, and Jason Isaacs. (Friend is already making me crack up in this, and it makes me happy to see him freed from the super serious bonds of his recent storyline on Homeland). Check out the trailer below:
The Death of Stalin will be featured during the Toronoto International Film Festival, and has a UK release date of October 20th. 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.
A film that combines comedy, drama, pathos and political maneuvering, The Death of Stalin is a Quad and Main Journey production, directed by Armando Iannucci, and produced by Yann Zenou, Kevin Loader, Nicolas Duval Assakovsky, and Laurent Zeitoun. The script is written by Iannucci, David Schneider and Ian Martin, with additional material by Peter Fellows.