Eastern Plays Best Domestic Film for Bulgarian Film Academy
by Stefan Dobroiu
Kamen Kalev's Eastern Plays [+see also:
interview: Kamen Kalev
film profile], in competition for the European Parliament's LUX Prize 2009, won the 2009 Best Film Award during a Bulgarian Film Academy ceremony held yesterday. The filmmaker also received Best Director and Best Feature Debut.
The co-production by Bulgaria’s Waterfront Film along with Sweden’s The Chimney Pot and Film i Väst is one of the most praised Bulgarian titles of recent years. The film has won numerous trophies at home, as well as at international film festivals such as Bratislava, Warsaw and Tokyo.
Eastern Plays is also the first Bulgarian title selected in the Official Selection of the Cannes Film Festival in the last two decades – in the 2009 Directors' Fortnight. Sadly, actor Christo Christov (who won Best Actor at Tokyo) died in an accident only a few days after the shooting finished and the film is dedicated to him.
Eastern Plays tells the story of two brothers who have lost all contact and are suddenly brought together when they take opposite sides in the racist beating of a Turkish family. While Georgi (Ovanes Torosian), who’s recently joined a neo-Nazi group, takes part in the violence, Itso (Christov) rescues the victims. Although separated by many things, the two brothers will soon realize that only together will they understand their goal in life.
Kalev was born in Burgas, Bulgaria, in 1975. He graduated from the FEMIS in Paris in 2002 and has directed and produced several award-winning short films.
According to Waterfront Film, Kalev is now shooting his second feature, Leaving Together, the story of a young couple on vacation on a small Bulgarian island where strange things start to happen.
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