The Romanoffs: Everything We Know About The New Show From The ‘Mad Men’ Team

Mad Men star Christina Hendricks

by Katie Rosseinsky |
Published on

From influencing our wardrobes and sparking a mania for mid-century interiors to ushering in an era of 'peak TV,' Mad Men's cultural currency still looms large, even 10 years after the first episode aired on AMC.

Such was the hype surrounding the 60s-set show that all eyes are on creator Matthew Weiner's follow-up move: a new Amazon series named The Romanoffs, inspired by one of the most famous families in Russian history. From the intriguing premise to the release date, here's everything we know so far.

So, is The Romanoffs a Mad Men reunion?

Yes and no. The Romanoffs (which boasts a rumoured $50 million budget) will see showrunner Matthew Weiner reunite with 13 of the producers, casting directors, writers and designers he worked with on Mad Men - including the woman responsible for the show's painstakingly authentic period outfits, costume designer Janie Bryant - as well as stars Christina Hendricks (Joan Holloway) and John Slattery (Roger Sterling). The subject matter and settings, however, couldn't be more different.

What is The Romanoffs about?

Each one hour episode is set to tell the stories of people around the world who believe they are descended from the Romanovs, the Russian royal family who ruled until the revolution of 1917, which saw the Bolsheviks seize power. Like Black Mirror, The Romanoffs is an anthology series, meaning that each episode will form a standalone story, featuring an entirely different cast and location. Speaking to the Hollywood Reporter, Weiner revealed, 'I love this idea that these characters believe themselves to be, whether they are or not, descendants of this last autocratic family who are part of one of the great true crime stories of all time. I also love that it's the chance to talk about nature versus nurture, what they have in common and what is left of a grand heritage.' Intrigued yet?

Some historical context, please?

The Romanovs were Russia's last imperial family, ruling over the country from 1613 until 1917, when the family of Tsar Nicholas II (including his wife Tsarina Alexandra and their five children) were murdered by revolutionary Bolshevik soldiers. The Princess Anastasia (yes, that Anastasia) was, however, rumoured to have escaped the firing squad, leading to an abundance of conspiracy theories (and a family-friendly animated movie) suggesting that the 17-year-old may have escaped to Europe or even America.

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Romanov or Romanoff?

The former is the correct Russian spelling, the later is a phonetic version, echoing its pronunciation.

Who else is joining the cast?

Such is his post-Mad Men cache that Weiner has assembled a pretty impressive line-up for this new project. Along with John Slattery and Christina Hendricks, the show has cast screen legend Isabelle Huppert, most recently Oscar nominated for Elle, Jack Huston, Amanda Peet, Aaron Eckhart and Marthe Keller. Expect yet more cast members to be announced further down the line.

When will The Romanoffs arrive online?

While Amazon haven't yet provided a premiere date, we can expect the series to make its debut as soon as spring 2018. Now that the streaming service has taken to following the Netflix binge-watch model (rather than teasing viewers with one episode per week, as per Amazon's initial plan for Prime Video) all eight episodes will most likely arrive online at once.

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