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Voice Over starts filming in Sofia

2009-01-12

Bulgarian scriptwriter and film and documentary director Svetoslav Ovcharov (A Farewell to Hemingway, Bulgaria, That's Me!) has begun shooting his new feature Voice Over.

Filming willtake place mainly in Sofia in two stages: the first from January 12 to February 8, and the second from May 15 to July 1. The €857,000 production received development support from the Media+ program and was further supported by the National Film Center and Bulgarian National Television.

The script is based on a real Communist secret police file belonging to Bulgarian director of photography Hristo Totev, the screenplay's co-author along with Russi Chanev and Ovcharov. The story recounts young Totev's emotional journey as he is unjustly hounded by the regime and separated from his wife. The anti-totalitarian drama has be likened to Germany's Oscar awarded Das Leben den Anderen by Florian Henckel von Donnersmarck.

The story took an unusual twist when, shortly before the shooting began, it was officially announced that Totev in reality was a secret agent. The news provoked heated discussions in the Bulgarian media questioning the moral value of the whole project. Ovcharov published a statement in the Bulgarian press saying: "When I learned the news I was deeply disappointed, but it did not last long. Who am I to judge my colleague?"

Ovcharov declared that the film will not administer justice. "I want to show how it was to make films during the Communist times and what it really cost people." Ovcharov engaged for the lead part the popular actor Ivan Barnev, most recently praised for his starring role in Jiri Menzel's I Served the King of England.

Voice Over is a national co-production between Gala film and Omega films. The latter is backing the development of Ovcharov's next project Leda and the Swan dedicated tothe Bulgarian-born French artist Jules Pasquin.

Production credits:

Script - Russi Chanev, Hristo Totev, Svetoslav Ovcharov

Director - Svetoslav Ovcharov

Director of Photography - Ralli Ralchev

Art Directors - Boriana Semerdjieva, Georgy Todorov

Costumes - Boriana Semerdjieva

Sound - Valentin Kirilov, Valeria Popova

Editing - Svetoslav Ovcharov, Nina Altaparmakova

Producers - Galina Toneva, Kiril Kirilov (Gala film)

Diko Mihov, Theodore Vassilev, Svetoslav Ovcharov (Omega films)

Cast

The Director of Photography - Ivan Barnev

Diana - Kassiel Noah Asher

Antoan - Jassen Atanassov

Diana's mother - Tzvetana Maneva

Serafimova - Gergana Pletnyova

Karlo - Valentin Ganev

Fani - Koina Russeva

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