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French actor and Russian citizen Gerard Depardieu will star as Soviet dictator Joseph Stalin in a planned movie with the working title Le divan de Staline (Stalin’s Sofa).
French actress and director Fanny Ardant is set to direct the movie, based on French author Jean-Daniel Baltassat’s 2013 novel of the same name.
Moscow-based film studio Mosfilm said it would provide costumes and props for the movie, produced by French/Portuguese company Leopardo Filmes. The Russian company won’t co-produce the movie, with its role limited to providing production services.
The movie is to be set in the 1950s Soviet Union and will center on a young artist who is commissioned to create Stalin’s monument and must go through KGB scrutiny.
Depardieu, who was granted a Russian passport by President Vladimir Putin via decree in early 2013, has lately been involved in a number of projects related to Russia and the former Soviet Union.
Earlier this year, he announced a movie about WWII French fighter aces who flew alongside Red Air Force pilots over the Eastern Front.
Ardant’s directorial credits include 2009’s Cendres et sang (Ashes and Blood) and 2013’s Cadences obstinées (Obsessive Rhythms).
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