TBILISI: LA-based director, Nick Agiashvili has been confirmed to direct the UK/Georgian co-production Shindisi, to be produced by Liberty Studio, 20 Steps and Lakumi in Georgia in partnership with UK’s Film and Music Entertainment (F&ME).
This is F&ME’s fourth coproduction with Georgia and 20 Steps Production.
Agiashvili will direct from a screenplay by Irakli Solomanashvili.
“Our story will show the violence and brutality of war,” says Agiashvili, “It will show what really happened on the ground. It will deal with friendship, bravery, self-sacrifice and extraordinary courage that it takes to survive and fight for what one believes in. Our story is a small story, but a story that has to be remembered.”
Based on a true story of the Russian invasion of Georgia, the film takes place in the village of Shindisi during the August war. In the heart of Shinidisi, a heavily armed Russian military unit occupying the village opens fire on Georgian soldiers lured into an ambush.
The film will shoot in Shindisi in September. The producer is Edmond Minashvili whose credits include previous films on the subject. Minashvili produces along 20 Steps’ Vova Katcharava and Lakumi’s Konstantin Mindia Esadze (who doubles as DOP) and F&ME’s Mike Downey and Samantha Taylor.
The film stars Merab Ninidze, internationally known for his appearance in Steven Spielberg’s Bridge of Spies and Academy Award winning Nowhere in Africa, and Misha Gomiashvili. The score will be composed by Gia Kancheli.
“It is great to be embarking on our fourth official co-production with Georgia,” says Film and Music Entertainment’s Mike Downey. “We were one of the first international companies in on the ground in Georgia and we are glad that we have been able to build up a reciprocal two-way street of co-producing each other’s films. Later in the year we will be bringing in Rudolph Herzog’s black comedy How To Sell a War, making it production number 5. It really helps now that the tax credits will be really bedded in at about our time of shooting.”
The Georgian tax credits were launched in January 2016.
“We have had support for all our projects from the GNFC,” says Fame’s Samantha Taylor, “but this extra 20 plus per cent boost will make all the difference. Georgia is already the most cost effective and efficient place to shoot in the region and this will help producers get an extra bang for their buck and give that extra incentive to travel a bit further east.”
The Minister of Culture and Monument Protection of Georgia, Mikheil Giorgadze will be in Cannes on Sunday to open a presentation by the Georgian National Film Centre of the Georgian film industry’s incentive scheme of a 20-25 % cash rebate offered by the Government of Georgia.