FNE at KVIFF: Paradjanov

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КYIV: Ukrainian director Olena Fetisova and French director Serge Avedikian are paying homage to the great Armenian director Sergei Paradjanov through a feature encompassing his genius and his struggle with Soviet authorities.

Paradjanov will have the world premiere in the East of the West competition at the Karlovy Vary International Film Festival, 28 June-6 July 2013.

This film co-directed by Fetisova and Avedikian is an intimate project Olena Fetisova nourished for five years after many more years of fascination with this unclassifiable filmmaker. 

Fetisova told FNE, “It happened in 1973. I could hear my parents, then working in the film industry, whispering nervously in the kitchen: ‘The director Paradjanov has been arrested. For sodomy… five years in a high-security prison’. I was scared. The illusion of a happy life in the Soviet Union vanished forever before my eyes. I am deeply convinced that the story of Paradjanov’s life is well worth filming as a drama about a free-thinking maverick genius that couldn’t fit in a totalitarian regime that saw him as dangerous. I consider this film as a film about freedom of self-expression.”

Fetisova started working on the project in 2008 and gradually managed to transform it into a multi-national enterprise. When meeting Serge Avedikian (winner of the 2010 Cannes Palme d'Or for the best short film with Chienne d'Histoire /Barking Island) for the leading role, she decided to share the direction with him. 

Paradjanov is produced by Fetisova through Interfilm Production Studio, in association with Alexander Vartanian (Ukraine), and in coproduction with Gorune Aprikian and Marie-Claude Arbaudie through the French company Araprod, Tinatin Kajrishvili through the Georgian company Gemini Producing Center, in association with the Georgian company Millimetr Film, and also in coproduction with Martin Adoian and Tagughi Karapetian through the Armenian company, Paradise.

Fifty-six percent of the budget of 1,980,000 EUR was funded by the Ukrainian State Film Agency and Ukrainian private investors. The project is also supported by ARTE France Cinema, CNC and Monsignor Pierre Berge grant with 24%, the Georgian National Film Center and a private Georgian investor with 10%, and the Armenian National Film Center and the Ministry of Culture of Armenia with 10%, Fetisova told FNE.

Shooting started on 1 May 2012 in Georgia, continued in France, and took place mostly in Ukraine. The postproduction took place in Ukraine and partly in France.

The Ukrainian film premiere will be in the international competition at Odessa International Film Festival 12-20 July 2013. Arthouse Traffic  is distributing the film in the Ukraine. 


Production information

Interfilm Production Studio
6/8 Citadelna str.,
Кyiv, 01015, Ukraine
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99 bis avenue du Général Leclerc
75014 Paris, France
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Gemini Producing Center
of 7 Svanidze st., 0179, Tbilisi, Georgia
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of 18 Abovyan st., 0001, Yerevan, Armenia
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Co-directors: Serge Avedikian and Olena Fetisova
Script: Olena Fetisova
DoP: Sergiy Mykhalchuk
Music: Michel Karski
Editors: Alexandra Strauss, Olexandr Shvets

Cast: Serge Avedikian, Yulia Peresild, Karen Badalov, Alla Sergiyko, Roman Lutskiy, Konstantin Voytenko, Zaza Kashibadze, Ferdinando Vicentini Orgnani