FNE at 40th Anniversary Golden Rose FF: Escape

    Escape by Victor Bojinov Escape by Victor Bojinov Courtesy of Golden Rose FF

    VARNA: Victor Bojinov’s third feature film Escape aka Chamla will screen in the main competition of the 40th Anniversary Golden Rose National Film Festival (23 – 29 September 2022).

    The script written by Delyana Maneva shows the positive impact of a liberal eco commune on 17-year-old drug addict Danny, imprisoned in a military type rehabilitation centre. Built in three acts, the plot first shows the “light and free” eco-community, then shifts to the physically harsh rehab and finally culminates in a strong clash between the two groups. The drama takes place in the village of Chamla in the Rhodopi Mountains. Situated at an altitude of 1,650 m with a panorama view of 360 degrees, the place has been abandoned for many years.

    “To me, the confrontation between these two communities practicing radically opposite philosophies of life corresponds to two main social models. The first one defends personal freedom, equality and tolerance; the second imposes violence as an instrument of power. That is why Escape has a special place in my film career,” Bojinov told FNE. “Each of the three parts was shot in a different visual look, but as a whole the aim is to show the greatness of the Rhodopi Mountains. Nature is of extreme importance.”

    Newcomer Alexander Kenderov is the lead, surrounded by Diana Dimitrova, Hristo Petkov, Snejana Makveeva, Venzislav Sariev, Dimitar Sulev, Nikolas Wanczycki, Ivan Savov and Zvetan Apostolov. French actor/dancer Benoit Marеchal is also part of the cast.

    Anton Bakarski, one of Bojinov’s closest collaborators, is the DoP.

    The film was produced by Gala Film with a financial support of nearly 479,000 EUR from the Bulgarian National Film Center.

    The shooting took place in extreme conditions. Nearly two hours of travel per day with off-road jeeps was required. Additional stunts with motorcycles, rain, fire and night shootings were provided for the production.

    “We started the preproduction on 29 February 2020, but we had to interrupt it on 13 March 2020 due to the start of the COVID-19 pandemic. The locations were approved, the camera and lighting equipment were provided and the cast of the leads was completed. But we rescheduled everything for 3 September 2020, when we started the 26 days shooting”, producer Galina Toneva told FNE.

    Escape is also supported by the Creative Europe Programme - MEDIA and it was developed within the Mediterranean Film Institute.

    bTVStudios released the film in cinemas on 11 May 2022.

    Bojinov’s previous film, the entertaining low budget musical comedy The Naked Truth about Zhiguli Band, had a record number of 113,059 admissions and over 500,000 EUR gross since its theatrical release on 16 April 2021. Despite the reduced capacity of cinemas, the film has entered the Bulgarian Top 5 for the last 30 years.

    Production Information:

    Gala Film (Bulgaria)
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    Director: Victor Bojinov
    Scriptwriter: Delyana Maneva
    DoP: Anton Bakarski
    Production designer: Rossitsa Bakeva
    Composer: Petar Dundakov, with the special participation of Lisa Gerrard
    Cast: Alexander Kenderov, Diana Dimitrova, Hristo Petkov, Snejana Makveeva, Venzislav Sariev, Dimitar Sulev, Nikolas Wanczycki, Ivan Savov, Zvetan Apostolov, Benoit Marеchal