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Anastasia is a 1997 American animated musical drama film produced and directed by Don Bluth and Gary Goldman in association with Fox Animation Studios, distributed by 20th Century Fox, and starring the voices of Meg Ryan, John Cusack, Kelsey Grammer, Hank Azaria, Christopher Lloyd, Bernadette Peters, Kirsten Dunst, and Angela Lansbury. The film is a loose adaptation of the legend of Grand Duchess Anastasia Nikolaevna of Russia, which claims that she escaped the execution of her family. Its basic plot centers around an eighteen-year-old amnesiac orphan named Anya who, in hopes of finding some trace of her family, sides with con men who wish to take advantage of her likeness to the Grand Duchess; thus the film shares its plot with Fox's prior film from 1956, which, in turn, was based on the 1954 play of the same name by Marcelle Maurette.

Plot

In 1916 Saint Petersburg, Russia, at a ball celebrating the Romanov tricentennial, Dowager Empress Marie gives a music box and a necklace inscribed with the words "Together in Paris" as parting gifts to her youngest granddaughter, 8-year-old Grand Duchess Anastasia. The ball is suddenly interrupted by Grigori Rasputin, a sorcerer and the former royal adviser until he was exiled for treason. Seeking revenge, Rasputin sells his soul in exchange for an unholy reliquary, which he uses to curse the Romanovs, sparking the Russian Revolution. As revolutionaries siege the palace, Marie and Anastasia escape through a secret passageway with the aid of 10-year-old servant boy Dimitri. Rasputin confronts the two royals outside on a frozen river, only to fall through the ice and drown. The pair manage to reach a moving train, but as Marie climbs aboard, Anastasia falls and hits her head on the platform, subsequently suffering amnesia.

Awards