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The Romanov Impostor

Meet the Historical Figures Behind the Characters


Grand Duchess Anastasia

Youngest Daughter of the Tsar 

Born in 1901 and killed in Ekaterinburg by Bolshevik guards, Anastasia is re-imagined as a survivor who relocates to Los Angeles to pursue a career in the silent film industry. Anastasia's new persona, "Ana Marlowe," is inspired by what we know about the historical Anastasia, including her courage, penchant for trouble, and love of photography.

    Anna Anderson

    Anastasia's Impostor

    After word of the massacre in Ekaterinburg spread, so did rumors that one or more of the Romanov children survived. Anna Anderson was the most famous impostor. Claiming to be the youngest daughter of the tsar, her history is similar to what is portrayed in the novel. Though the historical Anna Anderson never reached Hollywood in the 1920s, she did inspire Ingrid Bergman's Oscar-winning performance, a beloved animated feature, and a recent Broadway musical.


      Sessue Hayakawa

      Silent Film Star

      Inspiration for Sachio Hanari

      "Sachio Hanari" is inspired by Sessue Hayakawa, an early silent film star and sex symbol beloved by female movie-goers in the early 20th century. Though extremely popular, Sessue's roles were limited by racist attitudes prevalent at the time. He left Hollywood to make movies in Europe. Later, he returned and was nominated for an Academy Award for his performance in The Bridge on the River Kwai.

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