FNE at Golden Rose 2020: Danny. Legend. God

    Danny. Legend. God by Yavor Petkov Danny. Legend. God by Yavor Petkov

    VARNA: Yavor Petkov’s feature film debut Danny. Legend. God will screen in the main competition of the 38th Golden Rose National Film Festival (24 September - 1 October 2020). It is an independently financed crime thriller inspired by the 1992 cult Belgium black comedy Man Bites Dog, written, produced and directed by Rémy Belvaux, André Bonzel and Benoît Poelvoorde.

    Bulgarian-born Yavor Petkov, who is based in London, wrote the script about an Eastern European city councilor and businessman Danny, who blows the intention of a film crew to shoot a documentary about money laundering.

    “It took me about a year to write the script, with six months research and notes taking. I have worked in financial crime prevention for over ten years, so at least I didn’t have to learn more about money laundering”, Petkov told FNE. “Of course, the vast catalogue of outrageous examples of corruption in Bulgaria and beyond helped greatly with the script. It provided markers for me to know what would be too farfetched. For example, if it happened in real life, then I knew I should tone it down from 11 to 3 or 4, so it looks just about plausible on screen.”

    Dimo Alexiev, known for his participations in 2013 Steven R. Monroe’s Spit on Your Grave 2, 2012 Simon West’s The Expendables 2, 2014 Renny Harlin’s The Legend of Hercules and the TV medical series Stolen Life (Nova TV), plays the lead.

    “We spent 2 years auditioning more than 50 actors and non-actors, because I wanted someone with the crazy charisma of Benoît Poelvoorde in Man Bites Dog, physically imposing, who speaks fluent English but can still do a genuine Eastern European accent, and can deliver a ten minute dialogue while driving”, Petkov said. “Alexiev understood who Danny is and what the film is about, added hilarious improvisations and helped less experienced actors. Honestly, I had not even hoped someone could play Danny that well”.

    Petkov said that he “never stopped working full-time and just took a two month sabbatical for the final stages of pre-prod, and the production and all the prep was coordinated remotely.”

    Iliana Lazarova performs the role of Danny’s wife. The cast includes newcomer James Babson, Kate Nichols, Valentina Aleksandrova, Suzanitta, Borislav Markovski, Emil Kamenov, Georgi Naldzhiev and Yordan Danchev. 

    The shooting took place in May 2019. Rumen Vasilev is the DoP, Antoaneta Kostova is the production designer. UK Shipka is the producer with Bulgaria’s Debut Film as executive producer. Hewes Pictures handles worldwide rights.

    The premiere was planned for 16 March 2020 at the 24th Sofia Film Festival, but was postponed due to the Covid-19 pandemic lockdown. The new date for the Sofia premiere is 6 October 2020, as part of the Festival's autumn edition.

    Production Information:

    Shipka Ltd (UK)
    Yavor Petkov
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    Debut Film EOOD (executive producer for Bulgaria)

    Director: Yavor Petkov
    Scriptwriter: Yavor Petkov
    DoP: Rumen Vasilev
    Composer: Boris Rappo
    Cast: Dimo Alexiev, James Babson, Kate Nichols, Iliana Lazarova, Valentina Aleksandrova, Suzanitta, Borislav Markovski, Emil Kamenov, Georgi Naldzhiev, Yordan Danchev