Netflix adds comedy show starring Ukraine’s actor-turned-president Zelensky

Netflix has re-added Ukrainian president Volodymyr Zelensky’s satirical comedy series, Servant of the People, to its library in the US.

The three-season show had previously been available to watch on the streaming service between 2017 and 2021, though Netflix confirmed its return on March 16 in light of the ongoing Russian invasion of Ukraine. 

Servant of the People follows the political misadventures of a high school teacher (played by the then-comedian Zelensky) who unexpectedly becomes the president of Ukraine after featuring in a viral video condemning government corruption in his country.

The series ended when Zelensky, in a miraculous turn of irony, was himself elected to the real-life post of Ukrainian president in 2019. He ran under the banner of a new political party, also called Servant of the People.

See more

The Hollywood Reporter reports that a Swedish television group, Eccho Rights, has been handling the global distribution of the series during Russia’s invasion of Ukraine. The UK’s Channel 4 is among the broadcasters currently licensing Servant of the People from Eccho Rights, hence why the show is only being made available to stream on the US version of Netflix. 

In a statement (via Deadline) announcing the show’s return to market this month, Eccho managing partner Nicola Söderlund said: “While the real-world scenario facing Zelensky and the Ukrainian people is far more grim and appalling than the comedy of the series, there are obvious parallels with the real-world situation, and Servant of the People is a fascinating, important and historic piece of television.”

The move to re-add Zelensky’s comedy series to Netflix comes on the same day the Ukrainian president issued an address to US Congress calling for further sanctions on Russia and a no-fly zone over Ukraine.

As part of its condemnation of Russian hostilities toward Ukraine, Netflix has suspended its services in the former country and also paused all future projects and acquisitions from Russia.

Read the original article here