Everything Inventing Anna on Netflix got wrong about the Anna Delvey case

For a start, Anna has said she definitely didn’t get tea in her media visits in prison

Inventing Anna on Netflix presents itself as a true crime drama recreating the crazy case of New York’s fake heiress Anna Delvey – real name Anna Sorokin. Whilst the show even says itself that everything in it is true, apart from the parts that are totally made up, that seems to be more of a dig at all the lies Anna told. However, some parts of the show aren’t completely true to how things really played out.

Anna Delvey scammed banks, hotels, New York’s elite and even her own friends out of hundreds of thousands of dollars. Anna pretended to be an heiress with a $60million family fortune, in order to try to convince investors and banks to loan her money for her grand business plan, the Anna Delvey Foundation.

So, separating the fact from the fiction, here’s everything Inventing Anna got wrong about the case or changed for the sake of the show.

The real journalist who wrote about Anna Delvey had a different experience to what’s shown in Inventing Anna

Fact vs fiction and everything Inventing Anna got wrong about the Anna Delvey case in real life

via Netflix

There are quite a few aspects to the story of the journalist in Inventing Anna that are different to what happened in real life. For a start, the character we see is called Vivian Kent, and in real life the journalist is Jessica Pressler. Vivian Kent is played by Anna Chlumsky in the show, and works for Manhattan Magazine. In real life, Jessica Pressler worked for New York Magazine.

One of the first things we see is the journalist’s male bosses being extremely stubborn about the idea of an investigative piece about Anna Delvey. The real Jessica Pressler has said her bosses weren’t actually like this in real life. I think the show bosses are a stand-in for patriarchal offices in general,” she said. “But this is a thing where fact is braided with fiction. It was not a no-brainer to do an 8,000-word story about a non-famous person. It might be now.”

Jessica Pressler also didn’t have an elaborate police-style investigation wall, sadly

Fact vs fiction and everything Inventing Anna got wrong about the Anna Delvey case in real life

via Netflix

The real Jessica Pressler has confirmed she didn’t have a huge wall set up in her home pinning pictures and facts together, unfortunately. In real life, she said she simply used Google Docs and Excel, which is much less glamorous for TV.

Anna didn’t get tea and special treatment in prison

In some of the scenes where we see Vivian visit Anna in prison to speak to her, Vivian requests a media appointment and her and Anna go into a private room with tea. Anna has since said this isn’t true, telling New York Times there’s “def no tea” at Rikers. She added visitors did have access to a cash-only coffee machine, though “it doesn’t come in porcelain cups” as the tea appears to in the show.

via Netflix

Some character and location names were changed in Inventing Anna

A lot of the characters in Inventing Anna are based on real people in Anna’s life, but some have different names in the show to real life. In the show, Alan Reed is the name of Anna’s financial advisor, while in real life, he was called Andy Lance. The hotel where Anna stays, and Neff works, is called 12 George in the show, but 11 Howard in real life.

The courtroom Anna appeared in is much less glamorous in real life

Fact vs fiction and everything Inventing Anna got wrong about the Anna Delvey case in real life

via Netflix

Sorry, but the real courtroom Anna Delvey was tried in wasn’t nearly as pretty as the one shown in Inventing Anna. Delvey was convicted in the New York Supreme Court, which basically has court rooms that are dull and look like classrooms.

Only some details about Anna’s boyfriend are factual in Inventing Anna

via Netflix

Not everything we see about Anna’s boyfriend in the show is real. For a start, he’s called Chase in Inventing Anna, and in real life his identity hasn’t been made public – despite there being loads of rumours about who it ~could~ be.

Most of the details about the app he is making appear to be true – Chase in the show is said to be “an Asian man in tech”, very rich, a wannabe millionaire and working on his own app. In the real life article the show is based on, the boyfriend of Anna Delvey is said to have been creating an app too. However, the name of it being “Wake” – as is it in the show – seems to be fictionalised.

Jessica Pressler didn’t break into Anna’s family home

Fact vs fiction and everything Inventing Anna got wrong about the Anna Delvey case in real life

via Netflix

In episode eight, Vivian Kent takes a trip to Germany to try and interview Anna’s family. Jessica Pressler did take this trip in real life, but it was quite different to how we saw it on the show. We see Vivian lurking around the family home, but in reality Anna’s family was expecting Jessica’s trip. Jessica told Vulture she “definitely did not try to break into anyone’s home” and “there was a lot more laughing” during her real life trip.

Inventing Anna is available on Netflix now. For all the latest Netflix news, drops, quizzes and memes like The Holy Church of Netflix on Facebook. 

Related stories recommended by this writer:

Inventing Anna wasn’t great, but these 11 Netflix shows do fraud and true crime drama better

• Anna Delvey has gone IN on the real Rachel Williams calling her a ‘Karen’ and a ‘hypocrite’

• ‘Shocking and dangerous’: The real Rachel has slated Netflix for portrayal in Inventing Anna