Roseanne is heading to Moscow. Russian broadcaster CTC has ordered a pilot for Katya, a local adaptation of ABC’s iconic 1980s sitcom, which starred stand up comedian Roseanne Barr, John Goodman and Laurie Metcalf.
“Our adaptation of Roseanne will resonate with Russian audiences because it is based in truth”, said Jeff Lerner, Executive Vice-President of Scripted Programming, International Production for Sony Pictures Television. “The series will show a real working class family getting through each day, laughing at the trials and tribulations life sends their way and making the audience smile along with them”.
Roseanne initially aired on ABC between 1988 and 1997 and told the story of the blue-collar Conner family, who were doing the best to raise their three kids in Illinois. A highlight of the show was Roseanne’s mercurial sister Jackie. Produced by Carsey-Werner, the series starred Roseanne Barr, John Goodman, Laurie Metcalf, Sara Gilbert, Michael Fishman, Lecy Goranson, Sarah Chalke, Johnny Galecki, Natalie West, Glenn Quinn, Estelle Parsons, Sandra Bernhard, Michael O’Keefe and Martin Mull.
Famously, there was a dispute early on in the show’s run between Barr and original showrunner Matt Williams. Williams, who had developed the series with Barr, had been listed as the series creator, which enraged Roseanne as the series was based on her stand-up routine. The animosity between the two had an adverse effect on production leading to a standoff during the first season, in which Roseanne threatened to quit. The situation was only resolved when, towards the end of season one, Williams exited the show, which went on to become a ratings hit.
Few details are available about the Russian version that is in development, besides the fact it will once again follow the day-to-day lives of a working class family. Notably, this is the first foreign language adaptation of Roseanne. Such international remakes of hit U.S. sitcoms have becomes popular in recent years, with SPT having developed remakes of Everybody Loves Raymond in numerous territories. Even the BBC took a stab at adapting Raymond, but after shooting a pilot starring Lee Mack and Cathering Tate in 2013, they decided not to move forward with the project.