Production begins on Keira Knightley, Jude Law starrer ‘Anna Karenina’

Director Joe Wright’s adaptation of the classic Leo Tolstoy novel “Anna Karenina” has commenced production, according to distributor Focus. The film will shoot in both the U.K. and Russia.

The film stars Keira Knightley (in her third collaboration with Wright) as the title character, the unhappy wife of a high-ranking statesman in the Russian government during the late 19th century who engages in an extramarital affair with the younger Count Vronsky. Jude Law stars as Anna’s husband Alexei Karenin, with Aaron Johnson playing Vronksy. Kelly Macdonald, Matthew Macfadyen, Ruth Wilson, Emily Watson and Olivia Williams also star. The novel was adapted by Oscar-winning screenwriter Tom Stoppard (“Shakespeare in Love”, “Brazil”).

Wright’s last film was the action/thriller “Hanna” starring Eric Bana, Cate Blanchett and Saoirse Ronan. He also directed “Atonement”, “Pride & Prejudice” and “The Soloist”.

“Anna Karenina”, generally considered Tolstoy’s greatest work, has been adapted several times before, the most famous being the Clarence Brown-directed 1935 version starring Greta Garbo and Fredric March.