Top Russian film director Fyodor Bondarchuk honoured at Antalya IFF


    ANTALYA: Top Russian film director Fyodor Bondarchuk was honoured with an award for his artistic achievement at the Antalya Golden Orange Film Festival last night. The Mayor of Antalya region, Dr Mustafa Akaydin, presented the Russian director with the festival's highest honour at a glittering gala ceremony last night at the Turkish beach resort town.

    Bondarchuk's films, Company 9 and Inhabited Island, were presented at the festival in a special focus together with another film, Heat, directed by Rezo Gigineishvili and produced by Bondarchuk. Bondarchuk was in Antalya along with actresses Agniya Ditkovskite who stars in Heat and Julia Snigir, the female lead in Inhabited Island.

    Afghan war drama Company 9 broke all domestic box office records when it was released 2005 and now this hard hitting drama is again attracting international attention with USA fighting in Afghan. It has recently has been released in the USA. Journalist's have compared the film to Stanley Kubrick's Full Metal Jacket.

    The 35m USD Inhabited Island is a sci-fi fantasy that is one of the most expensive films ever produced in Russia. It is based on the book Prisoner of Power by the Strugatsky Brothers who also wrote Roadside Picnic that the famous Tarkovsky film Stalker was based on.

    The special Bondarchuk focus in Antalya was the first chance for Turkish audiences to get a look at one of Russia's top director's work and festival director Deniz Zyia Temeltas said that with nearly 2m Russian tourists a year coming to Antalya he wants to invite more Russian films in the future. He said: "I am proud and happy that the festival has been able to bring here one of Russia's greatest directors to the festival. The programme will give Turkish audiences a chance to see some of the best in Russian film as there is almost no distribution of Russian films in Turkey."

    Bondarchuk is preparing two new films, Winter Queen, a Seven Arts production with Mila Jojovich and the 50m USD Russian production, Stalingrad, that according to German press said Til Schweiger is on board for.

    Bondarchuk was in Antalya with Dmitry Rudolfsky, helmer of his Moscow based production outfit, Art Pictures (www.art-pictures.ru). The two were rumoured to also be talking to Turkish producers about a possible coproduction. With Russia set to join Eurimages next year the Russian government has made international coproductions one of its priorities.