Paramount+ and Showtime have released the first look at their upcoming period drama A Gentleman in Moscow, an eight-part limited series that adapts Amor Towles's internationally bestselling 2016 novel of the same name.
Set to arrive in March, the drama stars Ewan McGregor (Obi-Wan Kenobi), complete with a seriously impressive mustache, and is set in a lavish recreation of early twentieth-century Russia. The story follows the fictional Count Alexander Rostov, an aristocrat who was orphaned at a young age and sent to Paris by his family. But when he returns home in 1917, he finds himself on the wrong side of the Russian Revolution. Rostov is immediately arrested and put on trial as a "social parasite," a reminder of the old world the Bolsheviks are eager to leave behind. Spared execution thanks to his past affiliations, he's instead put under house arrest in Moscow's Hotel Metropol, forced to live in a shabby attic room and forbidden from ever leaving.
What follows is the story of Rostov's life within the Metropol's walls, a three-decades-long journey in which he learns secondhand about the many world-changing events taking place in the city outside and builds relationships with a variety of various guests, including a glamorous, self-made film actress and an orphaned child who becomes an unlikely friend. The novel — and presumably the series as well — is told in a nonlinear fashion, jumping back and forth in time between Rostov's painful past and his uncertain future.
Alongside McGregor, the series also stars Mary Elizabeth Winstead (Birds of Prey) as the self-made actress Anna Urbanova; Alexa Goodall (The Devil's Hour) as the Count's unlikely young friend Nina; Johnny Harris (Great Expectations) as conflicted secret police officer Osip; and Fehinti Balogun (The Bastard Son & The Devil Himself) as Mishka, the Count's best friend from university.
Additional cast members include Leah Harvey (Foundation), Paul Ready (Bodyguard), John Heffernan (Becoming Elizabeth), Lyès Salem (Coupez), Björn Hlynur Haraldsson (The Witcher), Dee Ahluwalia (Sex Education), and Anastasia Hille (I Hate Suzie Too).
“It’s an amazing, wonderful story and I am very excited to get to play such a fabulous role," McGregor said in a statement when the series was announced.
Here's the series' synopsis.
In the aftermath of the Russian Revolution, Count Alexander Rostov finds that his gilded past places him on the wrong side of history. Spared immediate execution, he is banished by a Soviet tribunal to an attic room in the opulent Hotel Metropol, threatened with death if he ever sets foot outside again. As the years pass and some of the most tumultuous decades in Russian history unfold outside the hotel’s doors, Rostov’s reduced circumstances provide him entry into a much larger world of emotional discovery. As he builds a new life within the walls of the hotel, he discovers the true value of friendship, family, and love.
A Gentleman in Moscow is produced by Lionsgate Television in association with Paramount, and it is the first production to come through Lionsgate's first look deal with Tom Harper's (Peaky Blinders) production company Popcorn Storm Pictures.
“The book is a rare and delicious treat and I fell in love with it the moment I picked it up 6 years ago," Harper said. "We are thrilled that Amor entrusted this brilliant team with bringing the Metropol to life."
The series is written by showrunner and executive producer Ben Vanstone (All Creatures Great and Small), with Emmy nominee Sam Miller (Luther) directing select episodes with Sarah O'Gorman (The Last Kingdom) also directing. Towles, Vanstone, Harper, and McGregor are all executive producers, alongside Sharon Hughff (Three Pines), Pancho Mansfield (Queen of the South), and Moonriver TV's Xavier Marchand (Mrs. Harris Goes to Paris).
A Gentleman in Moscow will stream on March 29 on Paramount+ with Showtime, ahead of its on-air premiere on March 31.