20-08-2020

PRODUCTION: Bulgarian Debut German Lessons in Postproduction

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Julian Vergov and Vasil Banov in German Lessons by Pavel G. Vesnakov Julian Vergov and Vasil Banov in German Lessons by Pavel G. Vesnakov

SOFIA: Writer/director Pavel G. Vesnakov is in the final postproduction stage of his first feature film German Lessons, a Bulgarian/German coproduction between Moviemento and Heimathafen Film & Media.

The plot follows the torments of middle-aged Nicola, desperately trying to mend the broken ties with his loved ones a day before leaving to Germany.

According to Vesnakov, who wrote the script, the idea came to him six years ago, but because of different bureaucratic reasons he had to wait for the start of the shoot for five years. “As a result the tone of the story has changed considerably, as my own personality. During the forced downtime my ideas became more radical and darker”, Vesnakov told FNE. “My whole attention centered on the main character, revealing him as a refugee in his own country. Despite his sincere efforts to receive forgiveness from his family for past sins, his life falls apart,” Vesnakov added.

Julian Vergov plays the lead role. The cast includes Vasil Banov, Elena Telbis, Gerasim Georgiev-Gero and Stefka Yanorova.

“Julian is a very good friend of mine since our common work on the TV series Stolen Life (produced by Nova TV). In fact, I know numerous actors personally, as I have worked with many of them in quite a number of TV series.” Vesnakov also said. 

The 2019 shooting lasted 32 days and took place mainly in the residential suburbs of Sofia, where the director grew up and felt at ease.

DoP Orlin Ruevski shot the film with a hand-held camera. There are not more than a hundred frames, most of which last six or seven minutes.

“We wanted the camera to move with the main character, although this requires much more attention. Generally, I do not like to explain things, I prefer to suggest them. I want the film rhythm to follow the rhythm of life. Therefore, there is no music either.”, Vesnakov also commented.

Moviemento is producing, supported by the Bulgarian National Film Center, in partnership with Heimathafen Film & Media, supported by the Hamburg Schleswig-Holstein Fund. This is the third collaboration between the two companies, which coproduced Vesnakov’s successful shorts Pride (2014) and Zeus (2014).

Production Information:

Producers:


Moviemento (Bulgaria)
Orlin Ruevski
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Monica Balcheva
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Heimathafen Film & Media (Germany)
Sebastian Weyland
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Credits:
Director: Pavel G. Vesnakov
Scriptwriter: Pavel G. Vesnakov
DoP: Orlin Ruevski
Production Designer: Severina Stoyanova
Costume Designer: Marieta Spasova
Editors: Pavel G. Vesnakov, Victoria Radoslavova
Cast: Julian Vergov, Vasil Banov, Elena Telbis, Gerasim Georgiev-Gero,
Stefka Yanorova