Minnesota author's novel to be adapted by Oscar-winning screenwriter


An Oscar-winning screenwriter is getting ready to adapt a novel by Minneapolis author R.D. Zimmerman into a screenplay for a feature film, the Star Tribune reported.

Zimmerman, whose pen name is Robert Alexander, is the author of the 2004 novel "The Kitchen Boy: A Novel of the Last Tsar," which is being adapted by Ronald Harwood.

Harwood won a Best Adapted Screenplay Oscar for the 2003 Holocaust drama "The Pianist."

Stefan Ruzowitzky, who directed the 2008 Best Foreign Language Oscar winner "The Counterfeiters," will direct. Kristin Scott Thomas ("The English Patient," "Four Weddings and a Funeral") will star.

Photo: Penguin Books

The Hollywood Reporter said the kitchen boy in the title was a real person named Leonka Sednyov, who worked in a Russian household. The Reporter said while Alexander had "incredible access to archives," the book is a fictional account of events that happened in 1918.

Thomas will play German-born empress Alexandra Romanov, who was a mother of five children.

The Star Tribune said "The Kitchen Boy" will probably shoot for a month this summer in Lithuania, as well as few days in Russia.

According to the paper, Zimmerman sold a business he co-owned in St. Petersburg two years ago to raise Russian money to finance the project.

Next Up

police tape, crime scene

Man and woman, aged 55 and 62, found dead in their home

The St. Louis County Sheriff's Office is investigating.

Gov. Tim Walz

Walz: COVID-19 guidance for Christmas likely to be similar to Thanksgiving

Thanksgiving featured a ban on social gatherings with non-household members.


Mall of America is offering a virtual Santa experience this year

People can virtually tour Santa's Candy Cane Institute.

PD Shimmers 4

Annual guide to finding holiday lights displays in MN is released

More than 80 holiday displays are on this year's list.

duluth police department

Duluth police officer charged in September shooting

The officer, who is a five-year veteran, is charged with two felonies.

Screen Shot 2020-11-30 at 1.31.42 PM

Enbridge gets final approval to start construction on Line 3 replacement

The project has attracted criticism from environmental and tribal groups.

Kirk Cousins

Is it a 4-team race for the final NFC playoff spot?

The key for Minnesota likely requires winning on the road against two top NFC teams.


Nov. 30 COVID-19 update: Hospitalizations reach new high mark

There are fewer than 100 staffed ICU beds available in Minnesota.