Victor Bojinov delves into Bulgarian history in Heights/The Liberators
by Stefan Dobroiu
- Mixing real-life characters with fictitious ones, the story of the new movie is set in 1872
One of the most ambitious Bulgarian productions in recent years, Heights/The Liberators [+see also:
film profile] is an adaptation of Milen Ruskov’s novel of the same name, published in 2011. The €1.35 million project explores the Bulgarian realities of the 1870s, a few years before the war that would liberate the country from the Ottoman occupation. Produced by Serpentine Ltd, Heights/The Liberators is the first fiction feature by Victor Bojinov, known locally for several successful TV series.
The story has been adapted by Neli Dimitrova (Love.net) and follows Gicho, a young man in the revolutionary group of Dimitar Obshti, a real-life revolutionary fighting against the Turks. After the successful robbery of a Turkish train, Obshti entrusts Gicho with a special mission: to hand a letter to Vasil Levski, the country’s most famous revolutionary, now considered Bulgaria’s national hero and dubbed The Apostle of Freedom. Accompanied by his friend Assencho, Gicho sets out on an adventurous journey, desperate to free his country.
Producer Ivan Doykov (Mission: London [+see also:
film profile]), whom Bojinov worked with on the TV series Undercover, told Cineuropa that Heights/The Liberators would be shot chronologically, with shooting taking place every season. The whole period of shooting amounts to 48 days. The team has just finished the winter shoot, and the production will continue from the last few days of April until mid-May. Substantial shooting periods will be left for the summer and autumn. Anton Bakarski is the DoP.
The project was supported by the Bulgarian National Film Center to the tune of €560,000. In December 2015, it also received funding from Eurimages. Described as a comedy-drama, Heights/The Liberators “shines a sharp, realistic light on the attitudes and psyche of ordinary Bulgarians” in the second half of the 19th century, according to information made public about the film.
The domestic release is expected in 2017.
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