The Black Nights Tallinn International Film Festival and the Industry@Tallinn&Baltic Event Film Market, which concluded their events last week, turned out to be very fruitful for Russian producers and directors. The Russian film “Sententia” by Dmitry Rudakov, was bestowed the prize of FIPRESCI, while Marina Naumova (Garpastum Pictures) won the Marché du Film Producers’ Network Award 2021 for young promising producers. The Work in Progress prize went to the film “NUUCHA” by Vladimir Munkuev.
The Black Nights Film Festival
The FIPRESCI prize winning “Sententia”, directed by Dmitry Rudakov, was nominated in the debut films category. According to the jury, Dmitry Rudakov’s debut was a very beautiful and meditative illustration of the last days of the GULAG-survivor and Soviet poet, Varlam Shamalov, starring Alexander Ryazantsev, Pavel Tabakov, Fedor Lavrov and Ivan Krasko. The film was produced by Alexey Uchitel and Kira Saksaganskaya at Rock Films. The Russian premiere is scheduled for December 10 in Vyborg as part of the Window to Europe festival. The movie is scheduled for general release in Russia on Dec, 17.
“Sententia” was also recently presented to the TIFF Industry and American Film Markets and inspired a great interest from the festivals film selectors and programmers. It is also due to be presented at other Russian and international film festivals and markets in 2021.
Dmitry Rudakov, director: It is really special that a film about Varlam Shalamov was recognized by FIPRESCI. I feel really honored to be among the winners of the Tallinn Film Festival, especially in a such challenging year like 2020.
Industry@Tallinn& Baltic Event film market
It is the first time that the Russian film industry has been so widely represented at Industry@Tallinn&Baltic Event, one of the biggest business venues for audiovisual content in Northern Europe. Within the framework of the RUSSIA IN FOCUS program, Russian directors, actors and producers took part in several panel discussions and sections of the forum. The maximum possible quantity of Russian projects was submitted to the coproduction market (to be presented to potential coproduction partners) and the Works in Progress program (to present projects at the production and post production stages).
Marge Liiske, Head of Industry@Tallinn&Baltic Event: «It has been a real pleasure to welcome and highlight Russia in Focus at Industry@Tallinn & Baltic Event this year. We were very impressed with the diversity, quality and originality of the Russian projects submitted and this was reflected in their winning two of this year’s awards. It was also a huge boost to our programme to include the experienced and insightful speakers and mentors which Roskino helped to bring on board. It’s clear there are more and more great opportunities for filmmakers in our region and around the world to look to Russia as a practical production partner, but also as a creative inspiration.». 
Producer Marina Naumova became one of the Marché du Film Producers’ Network Award 2021 winners, the prize which gives accreditation for the Marche du Film 2021 film market at Cannes. As a development and coproduction producer, Marina was presenting “The Beilis Case” project at the Baltic Event Co-Production Market (written by Yuri Arabov, director Andrey Proshkin, produced by Alexander Vainshtein and Archil Gelovani, Garpastum Pictures Co). Marina is also a participant of the EAVE ON DEMAND IN RUSSIA international educational program for coproduction, initiated by ROSKINO in association with the Ministry of Culture of the Russian Federation. The program became the first step toward the participation of “The Beilis Case” project at the international film market of Industry@Tallinn&Baltic Event.
Marina Naumova, producer: It’s an incredible feeling! It was quite unexpected (I didn’t know such a prize existed) and a great pleasure! After the ceremony, one of the jury, the program director of the Venetian Film Festival, Renata Santoro told me the prize was meant exclusively for individuals and they had no doubt it was me! Winning such a prize from such a high jury at a venue like Industry@Tallinn&Baltic Event is a great support, which inspires and challenges me at the same time. Taking part in the EAVE ON DEMAND IN RUSSIA program helped me lot, the 3 days of training at ROSKINO got me well-prepared for the market: who to make appointments with in the first place, what questions to ask and be ready for. Following the results of the market, we finalized the work-stream to concentrate on and are currently engaged in negotiations with potential partners.
“NUUCCHA”, the debut feature film from Yakutian director Vladimir Munkuev, won the Works in Progress Award in the Post-Production Awards category. The movie was produced by the group of Valeriy Fedorovich, Evgeniy Nikishov, Alexander Plotnikov, Boris Khlebnikov, Albert Ryabishev and Andrei Ushatskiy. This psychological drama is based on the works of the Polish writer and ethnographer Wacław Sieroszewski.
Industry@Tallinn&Baltic Event Jury: Nuuccha is a compelling debut from Russia for Vladimir Munkuev, spearheaded by Boris Khlebnikov, which triggered our interest to see the completed film, shot in the challenging beauty of Yakut, on the big screen as soon as possible.
There were 18 movies competing to become winners in three nominations. The Post-Production Awards winner was granted 5000 euros for post-production purposes by Post Control, one of the leading Finnish post production studios.