Author Topic: If you could remake 'Nicholas and Alexandra'....  (Read 53800 times)

0 Members and 1 Guest are viewing this topic.

Offline PAVLOV

  • Graf
  • ***
  • Posts: 427
    • View Profile
Re: If you could remake 'Nicholas and Alexandra'....
« Reply #120 on: February 22, 2010, 08:55:05 AM »
Yes Robert, the days of Brideshead Revisited and The Jewel in the Crown, are probably over, but......
I think it would be an excellent idea to do the series through the "eyes" of a survivor, as in Russian Ark. Starting with the death scene of Alexander ll and finishing somewhere around 1929 in Denmark. They could be a bit creative with the script, as many people would like to know what happened  to the survivors. Many of the buildings are there, and it would add so much to the authenticity of the movie if some of the original locations could be used. Sets are very expensive.

When I watch the original movie, I cringe at the interiors which are so wrong, and so unlike the originals.
I think the sets in the original movie were awful, but probably the best they could do at the time.

Some suggestions as to possible candidates :
1) Anna Vyrubova.
2) Baroness Buxhoeveden.
3) Princess Yussoupov, ( or Felix)
4) Grand Duke Nicholas   
5) Grand Duchess Olga or Xenia.

Boy, would I like to be involved in a movie like this, it would be so much fun.


Offline Robert_Hall

  • Velikye Knyaz
  • ****
  • Posts: 6648
  • a site.
    • View Profile
Re: If you could remake 'Nicholas and Alexandra'....
« Reply #121 on: February 22, 2010, 09:32:04 AM »
Pavlov, you make some excellent points.  I would highly suggest the GD Olga as a likely subject for  her view of history. Your time frame is perfect, BTW'
 As for settings..... well  the original locations are basically unavailable and  the use use of original  furniture and such  is impossible- they are too fragile, if they even still exist!  Also, studios have access to their own stock or prop rentals which specialise in such  things.
 Yes, creating a set is costly, but the furniture ans other props are created for  professional use, unlike the antiques in the real palaces. Also,  such a production  would require a lot of heavy equipment as well as people. The floors would be ruined! Lighting alone would damage wall  & artwork. So, all in all, I think the cost are probably even but the logistics quite different. I know the film N&A was not perfect, especially regarding locations,  however, it did convey the image of the splendour of the Russian court, most people have no idea of the real locations, especially at that time. I also wondered at times just what palace were they supposed to be at? I still think it a beautiful film. Exteriors, if not at Peterhoff,  can be anywhere, can't they? And, almost everything is recreated now anyway.
 I mentioned Last Emperor earlier- almost all of that was  props, because not much has actually survived of the original, even though it was filmed on location- the Forbidden City. And Titanic, out of necessity,  recreacreated all of the fittings of the ship for that film.
 As for current  views, have you seen  the Cranford series? A beautiful costume  "drama" with Dame Judi Dench leading.   Jane Austen is still popular [not to my taste]. So the studios still have the resources, but need the funds to produce.
 Remember, this is a for profit business, not a charity, so costs are going  to be high, no matter what or how any project is done!
 
Life may not be the party we expected, but while we are here, might as well dance..

Do you want the truth, or my side of the story ?- Hank Ketchum.

Offline Kalafrana

  • Velikye Knyaz
  • ****
  • Posts: 2912
    • View Profile
Re: If you could remake 'Nicholas and Alexandra'....
« Reply #122 on: February 22, 2010, 10:07:54 AM »
Pavlov

At the time the original film was made locations such as the Alexander Palace would have been inaccessible to western film makers and so they had to go by the limited information available in photographs and written descriptions. So not surprising that the settings are not particularly accurate (apart from anything else, the ceiling in the corridor flanked by the Chevalier Guards seems much too low!) As you say, probably the best they could do at the time.

I think covering the period 1904-18 was quite enough for a 3-hour film. Any more and you would need several episodes. If you started with Alexander II's death scene you could do episodes as follows:
1 Death of Alexander II up to Nicholas's accession and marriage
2 First half of Nicholas's reign, including the 1905 Revolution
3 1905-6 up to the outbreak of war
4 War and Revolution
5 Imprisonment and murder

I would be inclined to end there, but that is a personal view.

I think if it was going to be done through the eyes of a survivor I would pick Grand Duchess Olga - for me she is the most sympathetic of your candidates.

Ann

Ann

Offline Robert_Hall

  • Velikye Knyaz
  • ****
  • Posts: 6648
  • a site.
    • View Profile
Re: If you could remake 'Nicholas and Alexandra'....
« Reply #123 on: February 22, 2010, 12:15:19 PM »
Also good ideas Ann. Now all we have to to do do is write it and sell it!  I do not know how to write a screenplay. It would be re-written so many times to accommodate budgets and such so, that may not matter.
 I love the idea of a series. N&A was based on the book by Massie, and therefore covered a specific period. Also, the research & locations, considering the time it was produced,  was  rather limited as well, I think. A series could fill out the story. Something along the lines of Fall of Eagles, perhaps?
Life may not be the party we expected, but while we are here, might as well dance..

Do you want the truth, or my side of the story ?- Hank Ketchum.

Offline Kalafrana

  • Velikye Knyaz
  • ****
  • Posts: 2912
    • View Profile
Re: If you could remake 'Nicholas and Alexandra'....
« Reply #124 on: February 22, 2010, 12:30:45 PM »
'Fall of Eagles' was one of the inspirations for my interest in the period. Extremely well done (except for forgetting about the fall of the Habsburgs) and with a very high-powered cast.

As you say, we just need to write it, find the locations, and persuade someone to make it!

Ann

Offline Robert_Hall

  • Velikye Knyaz
  • ****
  • Posts: 6648
  • a site.
    • View Profile
Re: If you could remake 'Nicholas and Alexandra'....
« Reply #125 on: February 22, 2010, 01:02:52 PM »
I do not know how true this is, but I have been told there are  2 or 3 episodes of FoE that were never produced.  13 was enough  and the costs were rising ever so much! {I would love to read them, if true). Such series are possible, if  they sell,  especially to the American market [budgets are quire  restrained]  but IMO, only  the BBC or perhaps ITV can produce  such  projects. I would never leave it to Hollywood clumsiness, if it were ever up to me.
Life may not be the party we expected, but while we are here, might as well dance..

Do you want the truth, or my side of the story ?- Hank Ketchum.

Offline Douglas

  • Velikye Knyaz
  • ****
  • Posts: 1207
    • View Profile
Re: If you could remake 'Nicholas and Alexandra'....
« Reply #126 on: February 23, 2010, 12:25:18 AM »
I like the idea of a series about the Romanovs as seen through the eyes of Lili Dehn and several others.  She has the advantage of being upper class yet not a complete royal.  She is one I and many of this Forum could identify with on a more personal level.  That would leave the royals in their own lofty domain on the screen.  I have read her book and she gives some good insights into the various personalities.

We could even add someone like Anna V. for a more common touch as a contrast to the Empress.

Also let's add Count Alexander von Benckendorff  who was the the type of a servile but most elegant courtier, and his memoirs are available so that we know his actual thoughts and opinions of the scene.  He was a kind of Master of Ceremonies of the last Imperial Court.

The two tutors come to mind also.

Offline PAVLOV

  • Graf
  • ***
  • Posts: 427
    • View Profile
Re: If you could remake 'Nicholas and Alexandra'....
« Reply #127 on: February 23, 2010, 06:49:11 AM »
Yes I also thought the tutors would be a good idea.  Mr Gibbes perhaps. But I personally think that GD Olga would be the best candidate. History has tainted Baroness Buxhoeveden, so I dont know about her. So I am taking her off my list. If I had to choose between the two, I think Vyrubova would be my second choice.

Have any of you seen " Onegin " made by Ralph's sister Martha(?). It is exactly the sort of atmosphere one would need for a remake of this movie. Just so wonderful. If you have'nt, make a point of seeing it. The winter scenes in St Petersburg are breathtaking, one can almost feel the cold, and smell the trees in the country scenes.

Possibly if an English and Russian company colloborated, they could gain access to the Palaces on a limited basis. It has been done before. Russian Ark was a German/Russian joint venture. And look what they achieved. Very rushed and sometimes confusing, but they did it.
I am sure that the curators of Alexander Palace and others could use the proceeds for renovations.
Yes the floors would be ruined, but they can be covered with painted copies on canvas for protection. This has been done many times before, and I am sure they can make a plan with the furniture. Obviously they cannot use the original stuff. But the Russians will probably have copies. They were very creative in Russian Ark, although it was a bit weird sometimes. If Mr Piotrovsky allowed all these hundreds of people to rush through the Winter Palace, perhaps he would be of great assistance  in allowing the filmakers to use the other palaces as well. Without infringing on the tourists. They could shoot the inside scenes at night possibly, when the tourists are not there.

I just love the idea. I hope it happens, and that someone has the money to do it.
Maybe the world economy will come out of the doldrums soon, and this dream turn into reality. God knows, the world is in need of as much beauty as it can get at the moment, and where better to look, than in the past ? The Russian past, I would think.

 

         

Offline TimM

  • Velikye Knyaz
  • ****
  • Posts: 1940
    • View Profile
Re: If you could remake 'Nicholas and Alexandra'....
« Reply #128 on: July 02, 2010, 04:13:03 PM »
A remake of Nicholas and Alexandra would be great.  It could be done better than the original, since the fall of the Soviet Union for several reasons.

1.  We have access to much more information about NAOTMAA than we did in 1971, we even know their final fate for certain now.

2.  The movie could be shot in the actual locations, such as the Alexander Palace and Livadia (sp?).  Granted Ipatiev House no longer exists, but CGI can take care of that.

I think it's time for a remake.  If not a movie, then a mini-series, ala I, Claudius.
Cats: You just gotta love them!

Offline Robert_Hall

  • Velikye Knyaz
  • ****
  • Posts: 6648
  • a site.
    • View Profile
Re: If you could remake 'Nicholas and Alexandra'....
« Reply #129 on: July 02, 2010, 04:34:44 PM »
I would not hold  your breath over those idea, TimM.  A remake would not likely sell enough to make  a profitable return for a very costly production. Hisrori cal dramas are heavy on   $$$s   every aspect of making them. Using toe original locations would also be unlikely, as none of them are in the same state as they were in 1917.  With N&A,  palace from other countries were used as well as  glorious , expensive sets in studios.
 Movies now are now [as always]  aimed at the  largest audience. Action,  inane comedies,  crime etc.  Young people fill theatres for them. N&A would be a tiny niche market in the global movie going audience.
 As for a mini-series... it has already been done - Fall of Eagles. That was not exclusively the Romanovs, but they were an essential part of it. The only  companies that could do it justice are the BBC and perhaps ITV,  but neither are interested- I asked.
Life may not be the party we expected, but while we are here, might as well dance..

Do you want the truth, or my side of the story ?- Hank Ketchum.

Offline rosieposie

  • Graf
  • ***
  • Posts: 435
  • Eva Duarte de Peron, May 7 1919 - July 26 1952
    • View Profile
Re: If you could remake 'Nicholas and Alexandra'....
« Reply #130 on: July 02, 2010, 06:24:32 PM »
I read on an Ian Mckellen site that for Rasputin, they used locations in Budapest and a few shots in St Petersburg.
Beautiful faithful Nargony.
Thanks Emily!

Miranda:" Everything begins and ends at exactly the right time and place."
"Picnic at Hanging Rock" (1975) Movie.

Offline TimM

  • Velikye Knyaz
  • ****
  • Posts: 1940
    • View Profile
Re: If you could remake 'Nicholas and Alexandra'....
« Reply #131 on: July 02, 2010, 06:40:22 PM »
Ah, well, it didn't hurt to suggest it.
Cats: You just gotta love them!

Offline Robert_Hall

  • Velikye Knyaz
  • ****
  • Posts: 6648
  • a site.
    • View Profile
Re: If you could remake 'Nicholas and Alexandra'....
« Reply #132 on: July 02, 2010, 07:14:45 PM »
f course  not, Tim M.  Some years back, we even  had a  "recast" of a remake. It may still be here. But that went on for a while, even though we all knew it would never happen. I am with you, and many others, I would like to see a new version. Maybe not N&N  but a more updated  book. Perhasps FOTR. But  someone has to raise the money AND the cast to make it possible. I am just  being realistic. It is not at all likely to happen. And the quality of movies made today  makes me think we all might be very disappointed if it  did happen.
Life may not be the party we expected, but while we are here, might as well dance..

Do you want the truth, or my side of the story ?- Hank Ketchum.

Offline TimM

  • Velikye Knyaz
  • ****
  • Posts: 1940
    • View Profile
Re: If you could remake 'Nicholas and Alexandra'....
« Reply #133 on: July 02, 2010, 11:15:52 PM »
Couldn't Steven Spielburg or Oliver Stone do it?
Cats: You just gotta love them!

Offline Robert_Hall

  • Velikye Knyaz
  • ****
  • Posts: 6648
  • a site.
    • View Profile
Re: If you could remake 'Nicholas and Alexandra'....
« Reply #134 on: July 02, 2010, 11:33:26 PM »
Tim M, Those guys d o not make movies  without investors. Besides, it not their genre of movie. This industry is a business to make money, not provide   history lessons.
Life may not be the party we expected, but while we are here, might as well dance..

Do you want the truth, or my side of the story ?- Hank Ketchum.