PRODUCTION: Theodore Ushev Preps The Spinning Top

    Buzludzha Monument drawn by Theodore Ushev Buzludzha Monument drawn by Theodore Ushev

    SOFIA: Bulgarian-born Canadian animator Theodore Ushev is preparing his first feature film The Spinning Top. Romanian, Macedonian and Serbian coproducers are welcomed. Ushev was nominated at the Oscars 2017 in the Short Animated Film Category with Blind Vaysha.

    Bulgarian writer Vladislav Todorov, a professor at the Pennsylvania University and a high level expert in Russian and East European film after World War I, wrote the script. The film will be a dark fairytale dystopia taking place on a peninsula, where due to a bio-cellular revolution, immortality of man is achieved.

    “Anti-utopia imposes the idea of ​​an extreme state of the present, moved to the future. It makes us imagine how our current dreams, hopes and happiness are giving birth to monsters. While working on the novel, I felt anti-utopian darkness would not be enough and decided to mix it with a light fairytale ending”, Todorov told FNE. “To some extent I was inspired by We, a dystopian novel from 1921 by Russian writer Yevgeny Zamyatin, where a craft with humans on board is launched into space aiming at colonising the universe and gets rid of the death trap on Earth”, Todorov also said.

    Peripeteia is producing. The project was approved for financing by the Bulgarian National Film Center on 29 June 2017.

    Shooting is set to take place on location and to include several prominent East European brutalist monuments such as the House-Monument of the Bulgarian Communist Party, built on the Buzludzha peak in 1981 and described by Ushev as “a spectacular testament of the revolutionary cosmic megalomania.” In order to present “shocking places as magical objects”, the director also intends to animate approximately 25 minutes from his future film in Bulgaria.

    The Ushev/Todorov creative partnership will continue to look for financing for the film. “As we want to shoot a number of brutalist temples in Romania, Macedonia and Serbia, we are intensively looking for coproducers from these countries and also from other Balkan countries.” Todorov said.

    Blind Vaysha was produced by Marc Bertrand through the National Film Board of Canada.

    Production information:

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    Director: Theodore Ushev
    Scriptwriter: Vladislav Todorov