Bulgarian National Television Launches The Ungiven

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SOFIA: On 21 March 2013 Bulgarian National Television begins broadcasting The Ungiven, a new 12 part historical series about the rescue of 48,000 Bulgarian Jews from death camps during World War II. 

Assisted by four consultants, writer Emil Bonev wrote the script over a period of 10 years. The series covers significant political events between 1940 and 1945 in Europe and Bulgaria presented chronologically and following the factual steps in saving Bulgarian Jews.

The broadcast commemorates the 70th anniversary of the Holocaust.

The series, budgeted at over 1 m EUR, is directed by Vito Bonev and Ivan Mitov. The show focuse on the destinies of two families utilizing numerous reconstructions of Jewish life and traditions in Bulgaria during the 1940’s. According to producer Miroslav Borshosh from Artishock “the Bulgarian audience will learn a lot about Jewish culture.”

The new minister of culture, actor Vladimir Penev, plays the part of Metropolitan Cyril, a historical figure, who at the time dared to confront the authorities in favor of the Jews. Kiril Boyadjiev plays the historical character of Dimitar Peshev, a key person in the prevention of the deportation of Jews from Bulgaria. King Boris III is played by Penko Gospodinov. “Before shooting I need 3 hours for my make-up and during it I change 12 different costumes, specially made for my performance,” Gospodinov said. 

The role of Liliana Panizza is played by newcomer Lidia Indzhova. “It is not so well known that she put her life in constant danger because as secretary of the Commissioner for Jewish Affairs she had access to secret information. She transmitted it to the Jewish community in order to protect it,” the actress said.

The music is written by notable composer and actor Stefan Valdobrev. 


Scriptwriter: Emil Bonev

Directors: Vito Bonev, Ivan Mitov

DoP: Dimitar Nedelchev, Martin Balkansky 

Production design: Bobi Michailovsky

Costume design: Elena Ivanova

Production: Bulgarian National TelevisionArtishock Productions