Atanas Hristoskov developing 30 Days Maria
by Stefan Dobroiu
- The family drama depicts ordinary characters facing a life-changing situation
Currently in post-production with his second feature, Eighteen (read the news), Atanas Hristoskov is developing a new project, 30 Days Maria. The family drama tells the story of its title character, a woman in need of life-saving surgery whose husband tries to raise funds on Facebook by sharing short films about her good deeds. The film will discuss the influence of social media on our lives and how we promote ourselves in order to look good in the eyes of others.
The origin of the story is a real-life campaign that Hristoskov organised in order to raise money for a girl’s surgery. “I decided to take the general idea of the campaign and to make the characters completely different. Gradually, what I became interested in was not so much the donation campaigns, but another issue: the beautiful lies and the bitter truths in human relationships. That's what 30 Days Maria is about,” says the director about the story he wrote together with Nina Bozvelieva.
The DoP is Martin Balkansky, who also shot Eighteen. Hristoskov plans to shoot the film with handheld cameras, using visual effects in order to edit together new shots and archive footage of the film’s actors.
Invision Film Studios and Contrast Films are the project’s production companies. Hristoskov presented the project at the 2015 Sofia Meetings and is now waiting for the announcement of this autumn’s Bulgarian National Film Center grant winners. The project is also looking for co-production partners in Germany and France. The shoot is tentatively scheduled for the spring of 2017.
Hristoskov debuted in 2011 with No. 1, winner of the Golden Rose Award for Best Bulgarian Feature at the Golden Rose Film Festival. Eighteen will end post-production in December, with a domestic release expected next year.