The film is very loosely based on Buratino, a Soviet-era Russian cult kid movie, itself based on a novel by Alexei Tolstoi which, in turn, drew its inspiration from the famous Pinocchio. But this time the target audience is no longer children but teenagers and young adults, with potential name recognition value for the middle-aged set in the former Soviet block.
Buratino is directed by the debut Estonian helmer Rasmus Merivoo who embarked on the job while still studying at the Baltic Film and Media School in Tallinn. Merivoo also wrote much of the script, assisted by Kristin Kalamees.
The film is the the most recent product of an Estonian-Russian bilateral co-operation agreement in cinematography that allows both countries' producers access to each other's national film funding. The film is in Estonian but will be dubbed for Russian release. It was shot entirely in Russia, with a majority Estonian cast and crew. The film is reported to have a budget of €1.1 million, coming from Estonian and Russian funds, and EU MEDIA development programme. It was produced by Estinfilm and Marvofilm of Estonia and Planet Kino of Russia.
Director: Rasmus Merivoo
Scriptwriters: Kristin Kalamees, Rasmus Merivoo
Director of Photography: Aleksander Kornejev
Art Director: Natalija Kotšergina, Ljudmila Veselova
Costumes: Irina Vais
Sound: Igor Terekhov, Koit Pärna
Music: Rainer Jancis
Editor: Maarek Toompere
Principal cast: Mikk Nurga, Jelena Radevich, Jaan Rekkor, Uku Uusberg, Alo Kõrve, Maria Solopchenko, Valeri Kuhhareshin
Producers: Mati Sepping, Tiina Lokk, Dmitry Kabanovsky, Sergey Kabanovsky
Produced by: Estinfilm, Marvofilm (Estonia), Planet Kino (Russia)
Release date (Estonia): March 12, 2009