"Nest of Snakes"
FILM.UA was attending MIA Market this year with the new true crime drama "Nest of Snakes", based on the story of the Ivaniutins, a family that made serial killing a family business in late-Soviet Kyiv. The Ivaniutin family was responsible for over 40 cases of poisoning, resulting in 13 deaths. But the story, taking place in the late ’80s in then-Soviet Ukraine, also examines other families – big and small, poor and rich, happy and dysfunctional – who we inadvertently meet during the investigation.
"Nest of Snakes" was the only Ukrainian series to be picked up by MIA’s Drama Co-production Market & Pitching Forum, and the selection committee has commended the project on its thematic strength and global appeal.
This year’s MIA Market was special for both the creator of the series Anastasiia Lodkina and producer Kateryna Vyshnevska: the dynamic duo has been to MIA before. Four years ago, their first project together - mafia comedy "Koza Nostra" - was pitched at MIA. The project is finally completed, co-produced with Italian Pepito Produzioni and commissioned by RAI Cinema.
Anastasiia and Kateryna have now come full circle, pitching their new project "Nest of Snakes", co-created with another stellar Ukrainian scriptwriter Maryana Bek, known for hit series like "Nothing Happens Twice", which broke ratings records on the Ukrainian TV. Lodkina said: “After the 'Chernobyl' series by HBO, many of our international colleagues wondered why we, Ukrainians, weren’t the ones to tell this story to the world. I think that 'Nest of Snakes' is exactly the story that we should bring to the world. When the events described in the series took place, I was 5 years old, living under the illusion that the USSR was the best country in the world. Yet at that very time there was a family of serial killers operating in Kyiv, passing the knowledge of how to poison people from parent to child. And my and Kateryna's experience at MIA has confirmed beyond doubt that this story has a global appeal.”
Kateryna Vyshnevska noted: “Now that 'Koza Nostra' is done, it’s good to be back at MIA with a new project. At this market, in particular, one could unmistakably sense strong global interest in Cold War and Eastern European-set stories, as confirmed by the winning entry – 'Gold War' by Agitprop, a great Bulgarian company, and our partner on another project – 'Babyland'. Their win is great news for us too, because 'Nest of Snakes' definitely satisfies the appetite for this kind of storytelling. And we are happy to bring to the global audience a high-profile story about a family who made serial killing a family business, set in a distinct yet recognizable time and place – post-Chernobyl catastrophe Kyiv, Ukraine.”