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WMG / Anastasia

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Dimitri had a crush on Anastasia when he was a kitchen boy
Everything we see of young Dimitri suggests he was interested in Anastasia when she was a child. He's introduced sneaking out to watch her at the grand ball at the beginning of the film and he risked his life to save her during the siege at the palace (and was hiding by her room for somereason). Having a crush would also explain why he kept her music box for years rather than selling it note  and his wistful "princess I've found you at last" line. Plus if he liked Anastasia before that adds a lot of depth to why he's so devastated at Anya's true identity and why he's so certain he can't be with her despite changes in circumstances: He internalized that inferior mindset as a child when the old social hierarchy was in place, and a servant falling for royalty was utterly unthinkable.

The revolution caused Sophie to lose a few pieces of her mind.
She immersed herself in the culture of Paris for ten years, gaining a French accent in the process, in large part to drown out bad memories. There were also a few other pieces of her mind missing before the revolution. Dowager Empress Marie knew this and kept an eye on her. This, however, is not crucial information. Think about it: Soph had to have strength to have escaped the palace and country, so her peculiarities are (at least as far as the movie plot goes) irrelevant. Evidence and mentions of all of this can be found in the original script which is floating around the Internet. It's basically the same as the movie script we know, but extra bits and characters (such as Sophie's sisters, her opposites) were cut for time.

Sophie is Charlotte's mother.
The timeline is fairly close, they're similar in looks, and Sophie's (presumably) French. Now there's just ignoring the different studios bit.
  • Sophie was part Danish and part Russian in heritage, but she developed a French accent after moving to Paris. Also, Sophie was still in Russia when Charlotte was born.
    • Sophie is not Charlotte's mother then. But, she could still be an aunt, or cousin.

It all is a daydream the real Anastasia had.
The real Anastasia was still a child when she was shot. It was a dream she made up to keep herself happy, about marrying a handsome con artist, having her family be safe, wear lots of nice clothes, live happily ever after like in a fairy tale. She was probably too young to realize why she and her family were being persecuted, so she made Rasputin, a friend of the family, the magical villan.
  • The real Anastasia was 17 when she died, but it could still work as an escape fantasy.
  • This has enough Reality Subtext to be very true...and very sad. :(
  • ...But why would someone making a happy daydream to cancel out the reality, would still have her family dead in her daydream?
    • Because she had coped with it at that point. At that point she knew her parents were doomed… but what she hoped for until a few days before was that she had a chance to escape.
    • As for Rasputin being made the villain, I don't know, but even if the czar himself trusted him, a young little girl would have been quite impressed/scared of this serious, bearded, stern man dressed up in robes, speaking in a dramatic manner and making weird gestures.

It's all the Dowager Empress's daydream
As an old woman, slowly losing hope that any of her family has lived, she concocts an elaborate story to comfort herself in which her granddaughter survives, finds a decent, handsome young man, is reunited with her, and lives happily ever after. The disagreements with the historical account (the Bolsheviks storming the palace and throwing out the Tsar, as opposed to the February revolutionaries) can be explained by her memory going as she ages. As a woman who grew up in a royal family, presumably brought up to be a faithful believer, she would be likely to see the atheistic Bolsheviks as literal agents of Satan, and so, in her fantasy, they are dupes of an evil sorcerer. She cannot bring herself to accept that her beloved Nicky and his family were overthrown and killed because he was a poor ruler with who the people had legitimate grievances, and so she imagines instead that the Russian masses were deceived into deposing their benevolent rulers by said wicked sorcerer.

Sophie is the second chance of Marina Del Rey. Vlad is Benjamin the Manatee.
Watch both Anastasia and Ariel's Beginning with this in mind, and tell me you don't see the resemblances. Marina even had hair of Sophie's color before it fell out. As a bit of trivia, in real life, Sophie's character's inspiration was governess to the Romanov daughters before the revolution, just as Marina was governess to King Triton's daughters. My theory with the animated worlds is that someone believed Marina deserved a second chance at happiness and living a spirited life as opposed to rotting in jail or whatever her final fate was (even if she did become Ursula, which is something people have split opinions over). The mermaid movies end right around the time Vlad and Sophie were born, too. Perfect time for reincarnation.

The movie takes place in an alternate universe/scenario for the Russian Revolution.
This one should speak for itself; in an alternate universe, Lenin and the Bolsheviks managed to not only take the palace down in one revolution, but also managed to have the Czar and (most of) his family killed. In this universe, there is no "October Revolution"; only the February Revolution. Furthermore, in this universe, Rasputin is responsible for the Bolsheviks' takeover, and has supported them from the beginning; he provided them with the funding, spread the word of their cause (maybe he was the one who put up the slogans everywhere), and took over when Lenin was in hiding (possibly receiving Bartok as a present in return). The Czar somehow found out about this, and this was why he called Rasputin a "traitor". Rasputin took this as an insult, as he genuinely thought that turning Russia into a communism would help the country and therefore the Czar should be in gratitude. Angered by this, he finally decided to give the Bolsheviks the signal to attack, and used his little green pixies to help them get in through the gate. And finally, Anastasia was born several years later, which is why she is a child rather than a teenager when all this happens.

Of course, these events all contradict the actual timeline, but when you place these events in an alternate timeline, it all makes sense—the movie is going with that timeline instead of the one in our universe.

  • Fitting into that, Rasputin's curse is what caused the timeline to diverge. He was nearly killed the same way he was in real life but survived and found out members of the royal family were involved (thus his revenge motive, that is true). So he sold his soul to the devil to survive and have the power to take his revenge. His curse caused the February Revolution to work with the help of his minions, but in the process this allowed Anastasia's escape unlike in the real world (somehow, if all else fails, For Want of a Nail can be the cause). So ironically, Rasputin's curse saved Anastasia's life because had he not cast it, she'd have died like in Real Life, not that he would've known that. As for age, like you said, she was just born at a different time.
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  • I like this idea. Although the mob in the beginning could be anyone — there are no red flags or "all power to the Soviets" signs or any similar identification. The dates don't match (Lenin only arrived in Russia after the February Revolution, although it's possible that in this timeline he returned to Russia earlier as well. My proposal is that it's an Alternate Universe where the rioting citizens actually reached the Winter Palace and killed Nicholas and his family on the spot (instead of them getting arrested and executed by the Bolsheviks later). As such, Nicholas had no chance to peacefully transfer power to the Provisionary Government, and Anastasia escaped.
  • That's a pretty brilliant dissection of how and why the two timelines could have diverged. I'm strongly tempted to call this canon.

Pooka is some type of angel puppy.
Anastasia asks for a sign, she gets the dog. Pooka is the one that points out the explosives on the train. Pooka is the one that woke up during the dream sequence to point out she was missing.
  • Alternatively, Pooka is a spy, making sure she stays safe.
  • It's worth noting that a pooka is a type of (mostly) benevolent spirit.
  • Also note he was the one who led Anastasia into the hedge maze—as if knowing she had to face Rasputin once and for all before she could have a happy life?—and that from the start he never liked Con Man Dmitri...only warming up to and accepting him after Dmitri realized the truth about Anya and was going to walk out of her life because he loved her. A lot of insight for just a little dog...

  • Also, the fur on Pooka's head looks eerily similar to Alexi's hair. Pooka might be her baby brother looking out for her.

Rasputin's revenge was the result of his Real Life Rasputinian Death
We never find out why Rasputin wanted revenge (that I can recall). The real Rasputin was killed by relatives of the royal family; in this version, he realizes this and makes his Deal with the Devil before he can die, making him pretty much immortal and giving him the means to take his revenge. This explains why he wanted revenge.
  • This actually was his motivation in one of the older scripts; his introductory scene at the palace was going to have him dripping wet, as if he'd just climbed out of the river his body was thrown into, and he was going to accuse the Tsar of planning the whole thing before cursing him and leaving.

Bartok is a folk hero in this universe, and his movie is the story in question.
That explains the anachronisms; it's a 18th-19th century retelling of an old fairytale, or a child's interpretation thereof, and so blends in elements from every time period up to then. Which also explains why he'd end up as a familiar to someone so Obviously Evil. In the first movie, Bartok is either summoned from a "fairytale world" or a homunculus created in his image and personality. After all, who better to serve as an ally then your universe's equivalent of a Chessmaster Sidekick?

Anya was acting the whole time.
She knew as well as Dimitri did that she stood to inherit a fortune if she could "prove" she was Anastasia, who we all know was killed along with her family. So she did extensive research on the Romanovs while still living at the orphanage, and planned out how to con the empress all out beforehand, fooling even Dimitri, who she was only using as a means to get to Paris.
  • So Anya is actually Anna Anderson?
  • Fun theory, but there's one problem. The the fact that Anya knows how Anastasia and Dowager Empress Marie escaped from the palace. The movie implies that only the Dowager Empress, Anastasia, Dimitri and possibly Sophie would have known that.

Dimitri didn't take the reward money because he knew marrying Anastasia would get him even more money.
He knew once Anastasia found out he didn't take the money she'd come crawling back to him, thinking he had changed, and make him even richer than he would otherwise have been. In short, it was a Batman Gambit.
  • The thing is that there was no way for him to know that Anastasia would actually give up her life of royalty. He didn't even pull that counting he did earlier in the movie.

Rasputin's Dark Forces are the Friends on the Other Side
Two sets of supernatural-themed Mooks controlled by a Soul Jar after their wielder performs a Deal with the Devil can't be a coincidence. Of course, since Rasputin's reliquary, like Facilier's talisman, was destroyed before he could fulfill his bargain with his Friends (the delivery of the souls of the entire Romanov line), this leads into the below WMG:

Rasputin gave his soul for vengeance against the Romanovs. The "Dark Forces" certainly aren't friendly, so after his Soul Jar is destroyed he can expect a terrible afterlife.

Anya and Dimitri are in fact ancestors to Cale Tucker from Titan A.E..
It would make it so that Cale has a Strong Family Resemblance, as opposed to just being an Expy of Dimitri.

In the stage musical, Gleb's father was somehow involved with Anastasia's survival.
Exactly how Anya escaped the bloodbath of her family's fate is left very ambiguous. The circumstances of their execution in the musical lines up pretty well with historical fact (unlike the film's version of events), and one theory is that Gleb's father, a soldier stationed at the Ipatiev house who was definitely involved in the killings, may have been responsible for Anya's survival. Whether he helped her escape or simply turned a blind eye when he realized the initial assault hadn't done her in, it's entirely possible that he was involved. It would have been extremely difficult for her to escape without any form of outside help. Perhaps Gleb's father's guilty conscience after that night was due to more than just the innocent blood he shed; perhaps he was also wrestling with the fact that he had betrayed his revolution by allowing a Romanov to survive. If this were the case, it would lend a kind of poetic balance to Gleb's Heel–Face Turn at the show's climax. Perhaps he is more his father's son than he believes.

If Rasputin HAD fulfilled his curse and managed to kill Anya, he would have died anyway.
Since he drowned in that river and his curse was unfulfilled in 1916 when Anastasia survived, the unfulfilled curse was the only thing keeping him alive (since he was basically a zombie — i.e. literally a rotting corpse). So if he did succeed in killing her, the only reason he was still alive would have been gone.

Rasputin used his powers of dream manipulation to ignite the revolution.
The film doesn't quite make it clear if Rasputin is wholly responsible for the revolution in this universe or if it was already brewing and he just helped it along. However, it's quite possible he influenced it with his ability to control peoples' dreams. We see how this power almost causes Anya to throw herself off a ship; imagine if he was able to use it on dozens or maybe hundreds of people to sway the opinions of the nation. Maybe he only used it on a few key figures, who then put the masses into action.