Russian Production Firm Art Pictures to Launch U.S. Subsidiary

Fyodor Bondarchuk

Fyodor Bondarchuk's company, which produced Russia's all-time box-office champion "Stalingrad," is set to employ U.S. writing talent under the leadership of creative director Michael Idov.

MOSCOW – Fyodor Bondarchuk's production company Art Pictures, which last year produced Stalingrad, Russia's all-time box-office champion, has hired a creative director and plans to launch a U.S. division next year.

Michael Idov, who until recently was editor-in-chief of the Russian version of GQ magazine, has been appointed Art Pictures' creative director and also will be in charge of the U.S. subsidiary.

"My responsibilities at Art Pictures are roughly equivalent to those of a head of development, but more hands-on in terms of actual writing," Idov told The Hollywood Reporter. "In my first year, I will be largely staying on the TV side of things, which is a huge growth area for the company."

He added: "My work will begin with showrunner duties on Rushkin, a half-hour comedy series written by me and Andrew Ryvkin and co-starring Bondarchuk, and the creation and supervision of writers' rooms for several other TV series the studio is producing."

According to Idov, next year he will be putting together and heading up a New York City-based screenwriting collective catering to Art Pictures' film and TV needs.

"As a bilingual writer myself, I can be an effective link between an English-language writers' room and a Russian network, which is something the previous Russian attempts to harness U.S. talent have lacked," he told THR. "Art Pictures is already a world-class studio, as shown by Stalingrad; to try and raise its standards even higher is a massive challenge and a dizzying opportunity."