Pussy Riot Limited Series in the Works at STX Entertainment

The project is based on the forthcoming memoir of the Russian feminist protest art collective’s founder Nadya Tolokonnikova

Members of the radical feminist punk group ‘Pussy Riot’ stage a protest against Vladimir Putin’s policies at the so-called Lobnoye Mesto (Forehead Place), long before used for announcing Russian tsars’ decrees and occasionally for carrying out public executions, in Red Square in Moscow. (Courtesy of STX Entertainment)

Nadya Tolokonnikova, the artist, activist, and creator of the legendary Russian feminist protest art collective Pussy Riot, has struck a deal with STX Entertainment to develop a limited scripted series based on her forthcoming memoir.

Tolokonnikova founded Pussy Riot in 2011, rising to fame by staging demonstrations and protests, with songs advocating feminism and LGBT rights and denouncing the policies of Vladimir Putin. After a protest in 2012, she was sentenced to two years’ imprisonment. She endured a hunger strike to protest savage prison conditions and was later sent to a Siberian penal colony, Since her prison release in December 2013, she has relentlessly continued her activism, has been arrested dozens of times, been beaten and threatened constantly – and earlier this year, she was added to Putin’s “most wanted” list.

The series will explore the story of how a young girl from Siberia took on the world’s most powerful dictator – the origins and formation of the art collective; the actions of Tolokonnikova and fellow young women against Putin in Moscow; their arrest after the famous “Punk Prayer” action; their trial, conviction, and jail sentence; and the protests they conducted at the Sochi Olympics after their release.

“I was a broke 20-year-old artist studying philosophy, he was one of the most powerful, wealthy and dangerous men on Earth. In 2011, I went against him, damn the consequences. After years of imprisonment, harassment, attacks, trauma I am ready to share this story,” Tolokonnikova said in a statement. “My dream is to see my country peaceful, democratic and diverse, where gay people are not being stoned to death. Is it too much to ask? Does it make me an extremist? Today I’m on Russia’s most wanted list, labeled as a foreign agent, and recently was arrested in absentia by Russian court. My relatives and friends had been poisoned, my government wants me dead, but I don’t regret anything. If Pussy Riot’s story can inspire a new generation of rebels, it was all not in vain.”

Former STX president Sophie Watts will guide the project along with STX’s Robert Simonds and Sam Brown. Unicorn DAO co-founder John Caldwell will also executive produce.

“We are incredibly excited to make a show as courageous and daring as its subject,” Watts said in a statement. “Nadya’s life is nothing short of extraordinary. A gripping, real-life spy life, filled with heroic, relentless art actions and activism, this series will show how a persevering artistic spirit can change the world.”

The limited series represents Pussy Riot’s first scripted project and follows the documentaries “Pussy Riot: A Punk Prayer” and “Pussy versus Putin.”

Tolokonnikova is represented by Larry Salz at UTA and attorney Dave Ryan at Felker Toczek Suddleson Abramson LLP.

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