Komandarev in pre-production with The Judgement
by Stefan Dobroiu
The winner of a grant from the National Film Center in December, Bulgarian director Stephan Komandarev (pictured) is currently in pre-production with his new feature, The Judgement. The film is produced by Argo Film Ltd. (Bulgaria) and Neue Mediopolis Filmproduktion GmbH (Germany), and co-produced by Sektor Film (Macedonia), with an estimated budget of €1.7 million.
Currently location scouting in south-east Bulgaria, Komandarev told Cineuropa that his team is negotiating with an internationally recognised actor for a part in his new feature. The Judgement tells the story of Mityo, a middle-aged man who has lived for 25 years with a terrible secret - as a soldier on the Bulgarian border, he was forced to kill a young couple from East Germany trying to escape to the West, from Bulgaria to Turkey. Mityo is still on the border, but this time smuggling illegal immigrants in the opposite direction, from Turkey to Bulgaria and the European Union. After losing his wife, his job and the trust of his son Vasko, Mityo has now one last chance at redemption.
Komandarev is still making changes to the screenplay and expects casting to be finished by summer, for an autumn shooting. The director eyes an international premiere at film festivals in 2013 and is currently searching for an international sales agent. A domestic release will have to wait until the beginning of 2014, through local distribution company A+ Films.
Komandarev's previous directorial effort is The World is Big and Salvation Lurks Around the Corner [+see also:
film profile], which was short-listed for the Best Foreign Language Film category at the 2009 Academy Awards. Winner of more than 30 awards at 65 festivals, the film was theatrically distributed in around 90 countries.