- Katie Lowes was so captivated by Julia Garner’s performance on the “Inventing Anna” set she’d forget lines.
- Lowes stars as former Vanity Fair photo editor Rachel DeLoache Williams in the Netflix show.
- The real Anna Sorokin (aka Anna Delvey) left Williams with a $62,000 bill after a group trip to Morocco.
‘s new hit drama “Inventing Anna,” from “Grey’s Anatomy” creator Shonda Rhimes, required Julia Garner to transform into the notorious “fake heiress” Anna Sorokin (aka Anna Delvey) — and Garner’s performance even stunned her costars, like Katie Lowes.
Lowes, who plays Sorokin’s former friend Rachel DeLoache Williams on the show, called Garner “an exceptional artist” in an interview with Insider in October promoting her partnership with La Quinta by Wyndham. She also admitted that sometimes she’d “have to be reminded” that she had her own job to do while watching Garner in a scene on the “Inventing Anna” set.
“I was in a scene with her and I would forget my line because I was so busy watching her. I’d be like, ‘Oh, crap! It’s me,'” the “Scandal” alum recalled.
Like many of the characters on “Inventing Anna,” Lowes’ character is based on a real person. The real Williams, a former Vanity Fair photo editor and author of the 2019 book “My Friend Anna,” had befriended Sorokin before Sorokin scammed her out of thousands of dollars during a luxurious group vacation to Morocco.
As depicted in the intense seventh episode of “Inventing Anna,” called “Cash On Delivery,” Sorokin left Williams with a $62,000 bill for the Morocco trip. The fallout from that incident (and Williams’ failed attempts to get repaid by Sorokin) ultimately led to Williams going to the police and helping set up a sting operation where Sorokin was arrested in Los Angeles.
At trial, the jury acquitted Sorokin of the prosecutors’ charge alleging she stole from Williams, Insider’s Jacob Shamsian previously reported. Sorokin was ultimately found guilty of eight of the 10 charges brought against her, including four counts of theft of services, three counts of grand larceny, and one count of attempted grand larceny. She ultimately spent around three-and-a-half years behind bars before being released from prison in February 2021, at which point she was re-arrested by ICE.
Sorokin currently remains in immigration detention.
Lowes told Insider that playing Williams challenged her for a specific reason. “I had never played a real-life person before,” she said, also describing Williams as “so different” than her “Scandal” character, Quinn.
Lowes, who has worked on several of Rhimes’ earlier shows, was well aware of Sorokin’s story before it was adapted for Netflix because she’s a “born and raised” New Yorker.
“I had heard about it in the zeitgeist, this con artist,” she told Insider.
When Lowes first heard it was Rhimes who got the rights to the story, based on a 2018 New York magazine article journalist Jessica Pressler wrote about Sorokin’s schemes, she was hopeful that she could have a role in the story that had fascinated her.
“I was like, ‘Please, let there be a part for me in it. Please, please, please, please, please,'” Lowes recalled.
“Turns out, there was,” she added.