PRODUCTION: Bulgarian Director Ilian Djevelekov Completes Postproduction on TV Series The Portal

    The Portal by Ilian Djevelekov The Portal by Ilian Djevelekov

    SOFIA: Bulgarian director Ilian Djevelekov is in final postproduction with his six-part TV series The Portal, backed by the Bulgarian National Television, with Miramar film serving as executive producer.

    The plot revolves around a criminal psychologist Krum Bonev, living nowadays, and the sudden appearance of his long vanished uncle Dimo Troyanov, an eccentric physicist and university teacher from the Communist past. Thanks to the secret portal he discovered by chance, the two main characters travel back and forth over a span of 40 years. Toyanov comes forward to the astonishing for him year 2019, while Bonev returns to 1979 and infiltrates the bohemian circles of musicians and artists from Bulgaria’s most prominent pop music period.

    Matey Konstantinov, Ilian Djevelekov and Nelly Dimitrova co-wrote the script for over two years. According to Konstantinov, co-writer of Djevelekov’s previous titles Love.net (2011) and Omnipresent (2017), both produced by Miramar film, “The Portal is an adventurous journey through time. We created a plot without radical denial of the Communist past, and without excessive nostalgia either. Our atmosphere is full of nuances associated to the abundant musical presence of popular hits and famous stars of the 70s”.

    According to Djevelekov, “the six parts of the series look like six mini-feature films, 60 minutes each. There are time travels, crime mysteries and adventures garnished with a lot of humour".

    The cast is composed of popular actors from different generations. Velislav Pavlov and newcomer Alexander Kanev are the leads, next to young Julia Bocheva and Stefanica Kocheva. Key roles were also assigned to actors from older generations such as Tatyana Lolova, who recently passed away, Maria Stefanova, and Mihail Mutafov. Stefka Yanorova, Svejen Mladenov, Gerasim Georgiev-Gero and Darin Angelov perform supporting roles.

    Martin Balkanski is the DoP, while Georgi Dimitrov is the usual production designer. All the locations are in Sofia, where numerous sets had to be re-arranged in the 1979 style.

    Shooting lasted six weeks and took place in the autumn of 2020 in Sofia, in a COVID-19 epidemic sanitary situation. There were nearly 80 performers and extras in the crew, sometimes reaching over 100 people on set.

    “Realising this series without aesthetic compromises was a real feat for the production”, Miramar film’s Mila Voinikova told FNE. “The complexity of the shooting was very high because of the constant parallels between the two different eras. The Bulgarian National Television financed the series with nearly 400,000 EUR, but at the same time Miramar film negotiated many barter deals and involved a number of product placements. Despite the usual difficulties we succeeded and we are happy with the result”, Voinikova added.

    The prime time broadcast of the series will start on the Bulgarian National Television Channel One on 2 May 2021. 

    Production Information:

    Bulgarian National Television (Bulgaria)
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    Director: Ilian Djevelekov
    Scriptwriters: Matey Konstantinov, IlianDjevelekov, Nelly Dimitrova
    DoP: Martin Balkanski
    Production designer: Georgi Dimitrov
    Composer: Petko Manchev
    Editor: Alexandra Fuchanska
    Cast: Velislav Pavlov, Alexander Kanev, Julia Bocheva, Stefania Kocheva, Tatyana Lolova, Maria Stefanova, Stefka Yanorova, Mihail Mutafov, Svejen Mladenov, Gerasim Georgiev-Gero, Darin Angelov, Radena Valkanova