Who in their right mind would try to take a hit sitcom and make it over again in a foreign land? Who who want to struggle with the barriers of culture in order to find the commonality that exists in all of us?
Philip Rosenthal is who. Being the director/producer and contributing writer to the American television hit Everybody Loves Raymond, Rosenthal decided to take his show to Russia to see if he could make a go of it over there. To see if there was an audience who could connect with it. Though according to a fellow co-worker, there was no other show up to that particular point in time that was as grounded in reality as Raymond. Sure, Russian audiences had fallen in love with adaptations of “The Nanny,” “Who’s the Boss,” and “Married with Children,” but whether the likes of Raymond could be a success over there remained to be seen.
This movie’s greatness transcends cultural boundaries and touches on a human thread that connects us all. In the beginning, Philip worries that perhaps his show will lack international appeal. Don’t Russian’s have families and relationship dynamics similar to American families? This was a question Rosenthal asked himself. After a bit of time, he came to the realization that he knew all along… Everyone has relationships; and the dynamics of those are what made the shows concept work outside the United States.