Why Inventing Anna Showrunner Shonda Rhimes Never Wanted to Meet Anna Delvey

Find out the real reason why Inventing Anna Showrunner Shonda Rhimes never wanted to meet Anna Delvey.

By Vivian Kwarm Aug 16, 2022 9:02 PMTags
Watch: "Inventing Anna": See Pics of the REAL Anna Sorokin

Inventing Anna doesn't mean hanging out with her.  

While crafting the hit Netflix series, Shonda Rhimes never met with Anna Delvey (a.k.a. Anna Sorokin), the con artist who inspired its titular character. And according to the creator and showrunner, that was by design.

"I purposely didn't want to meet Anna because I knew two things from hearing everybody's stories: Either people fell in love with her and lost all objectivity, or they hated her guts and just couldn't cope," she told The Hollywood Reporter. "And I felt like I didn't want to be stuck in a position where I had these feelings for this person that were going to color how I was going to tell the story."

The 10-part Netflix limited series explores the story of Delvey (played by Julia Garner), who convinced New York's elite she was a German heiress, while defrauding major financial institutions, banks, hotels, and acquaintances for a total amount upwards of $275,000 until her 2017 arrest.

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Two years later, in April 2017, Anna was convicted of eight charges, including attempted grand larceny, larceny in the second degree and theft of services. While she was sentenced to four to 12 years in prison, she was released on parole in February 2021 and is currently being held in custody by U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE).

Shonda explained that she didn't want to feel sorry for Anna, but also didn't want to think "she's this monster."

But the TV titan did admit she's curious about what the future holds for the fake German heiress, adding, "I wonder who she's going to be in 10 years, who she's going to be in 20 years. She's got a lot of growing up to do."

Delvey has a different perspective about her actions, noting that she just wanted to "own something." As she shared in an episode of Spotify's Forbidden Fruits Podcast, "I just wanted my own thing and I want to be in control. And I just wanted to tell people what to do. It's such a different dynamic to be paid and to pay people." 

Inventing Anna is available to stream on Netflix now.