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Catherine the Great 

Velikaya (original title)
The story of Catherine the Great from the time she came to Russia as the bride of the heir to the Russian throne.




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Series cast summary:
Viktoriya Agalakova ...  Maid of Honor (2015) 12 episodes, 2015
Julian Mau ...  Johann von Lehwaldt 12 episodes, 2015
Fitz van Thom Fitz van Thom ...  Georg Friedrich von Manstein 12 episodes, 2015
Bastian Sierich Bastian Sierich ...  Friedrich der Große 11 episodes, 2015
Pavel Trubiner Pavel Trubiner ...  Grigory Orlov 9 episodes, 2015
Yulia Snigir ...  Ekaterina II 5 episodes, 2015
Pavel Derevyanko ...  Petr III 5 episodes, 2015


The story of Catherine the Great from the time she came to Russia as the bride of the heir to the Russian throne.

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis


Did You Know?


The original title when filming first began in early 2014 was "Ekaterina Velikaya", or "Catherine the Great". When director Aleksandr Baranov's television series Ekaterina (2014) ("Catherine") was released in November of 2014, in order to avoid confusion, the title was shortened to "Velikaya", or, simply, "The Great". See more »

User Reviews

marvellous historical drama
21 June 2019 | by manschelde-1See all my reviews

This Russian production dates from 2015, original title Velikaya (2015), also known as "Catherine The Great (2015)" for English-speaking regions.

The first series tells only the early part of Catherine's life in quite some detail and has 12 48-minute episodes, from childhood to the point where she takes power.

I watched Series-1 with English subtitles as I do not speak Russian or German. This was available in my region on Amazon Prime Video. I can see that some episodes are also on youtube without subtitles.

It's my first TV-series to watch that's been made in Russia with a cast and crew from that part of the world.

This historical story has been told several times on screen before, but I wanted to see the Russian version, in 1080p resolution. I did not see the 2014 series "Ekaterina", also Russian, so don't confuse these two. There is also another HBO/Sky version of the story, but perhaps it's wise to view the Russian produced versions. I don't know if this series is available in 4K resolution or higher, that would be astounding for the palatial scenes.

It may be helpful for viewers to brush up on Russian/Prussian/Habsburg/French/British power plays in the mid/late 18th century or to know the leaders of those powers during the period (because this series assumes you have some familiarity with the geopolitical situation of the period).

It has dazzling lavish settings and costumes, great locations, strong character actors, and it is a feast for television-viewers.

It seems a culturally important export from Russia, in the competitive world of content production for historical dramas for the online world.

It has a stirring theme and beautiful title-sequence and a delightful score.

It has a rather turgid start, for my taste. But the gorgeous locations and curiosity for history kept me watching.

Acting seems good and the dramatisation held my interest for the most part, although some scenes dragged.

The details of constant intrigues and plotting form much of the story.

But soon the pace quickens, although it took me an age to recognize the characters and their job-roles because of needing to follow subtitles instead of staring at faces.

I recommend this for viewers who enjoy historical dramas and who can accept viewing with subtitles.

I also look forward to viewing the second series which continues the story.

There only downside for me concerns the subtitles. The subtitles for English are poor, confusing, contain grammar errors, odd English usage, sparse, have spelling mistakes, and this seems the weakest part of an otherwise marvellous production for English speaking audiences. Better subtitles may make it more appealing to an international audience. I'm quite happy to view subtitles, but they need to be done well and by native English speakers.

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Release Date:

4 November 2015 (Russia) See more »

Also Known As:

Catherine the Great See more »

Filming Locations:

Saint-Petersburg, Russia See more »

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