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Press conference of the films participating in the Cinéfondation program



CANNES – TUESDAY 19TH MAY 2015: ROSKINO today hosted a press conference introducing the Russian participants in this year’s hotly-contested Cinéfondation Selection competition at the Cannes International Film Festival. Moderated by Andrey Plakhov, leading Russian critic and film historian, 14 STEPS director Maksim Shavkin and THE RETURN OF ERKIN filmmaker Maria Guskova were presented to international press to discuss their nominated projects.

For its 18th year, the Cinéfondation Selection has brought together 18 films, chosen from over 1,600 works submitted by film schools from all four corners of the globe. Russia is one of only two countries to have multiple competitors represented in the final selection (the other being France). Winners will be announced at a ceremony preceding the screening of the prize-winning films on Friday 22nd May in the Salle Buñeul.

Katya Mtsitouridze said of the selection: ‘To have two films selected for this prestigious competition underlines the strength of Russian cinema, and the talents of the young filmmakers emerging from our country. It was inspiring to hear Maksim and Maria talk of their projects with such evident passion.’

Moscow School of New Cinema’s Maksim Shavkin was on hand to discuss his 14 STEPS, the competition’s longest contender, winner of Best Short Film category at last year’s Moscow International Film Festival. Ksenia Zueva stars as Anna, a Moscow student who believes she has escaped her past in the big city, only for a familiar face to make an unexpected return into her tidy new life. Shavkin provided his insights into the project ahead of its Cannes screening next Thursday May 21st, 2.30pm at the Bruñuel Theatre.

Maria Guskova, a student at High Courses for Scriptwriters and Film Directors, and director of THE RETURN OF ERKIN was also in attendance. Her self-penned film follows Erkin, an ex-convict struggling to make the re-adjustment to life on the outside. Guskova talked of the influences behind the exquisitely shot drama starring Kahramonjon Mamasaliyev, and her hopes within the competition. The film screens on Wednesday 20th May, 2.30pm, also at the Bruñuel Theatre.

Other films presented to international press included a documentary PEOPLE LIVE HERE by Moscow students Ilya Novodvorsky and Mikhail Kutuzov, a movie about the war in Donbass, and THE WAY OUT by Mikhail Uchitelev (produced by Oscar winning Russian director Vladimir Menshov), that tells a story about a Jewish soprano hidden in the opera theater from the Nazis during World War II.

The Cinefoundation selection follows on from the earlier announcement of the Global Russian 2015 selection of shorts screening in the Short Film Corner of the Cannes Marché du Film. Earlier this week CEO and curator Katya Mtsitouridze revealed the Annual DVD-almanac of the best Russian short films.

This year’s almanac includes five shorts by students of the internationally acclaimed Russian filmmaker Alexander Sokurov: three works of Alexander Sokurov’s students of Kabardino-Balkarian State University, one film produced by Non-commercial Foundation for Cinema Support An Example of Intonation (Alexander Sokurov's foundation, St. Petersburg) and film-winner of Alexander Sokurov’s cinema laboratory C.L.A.S. that took place at St. Petersburg International Media Forum (SPIMF) 2014.

  • ARMY, directed by Oleg Khamokov (Kabardino-Balkarian State University)
  • IT WAS SUMMER, directed by Shamil Yagafarov (Non-commercial Foundation for Cinema Support An Example of Intonation)
  • THEY ABANDONED ME, directed by Kira Kovalenko (Kabardino-Balkarian State University)
  • FIRST I, directed by Kantemir Balagov (Kabardino-Balkarian State University)
  • YOUR SON, directed by Denis Terenichev, Ekaterina Terenicheva (winners of C.L.A.S.)

ROSKINO plays a key role in assisting the country’s filmmakers and producers with their commercial releases abroad, promoting Russian films at major international film festivals, markets, and awards, and working to facilitate co-operation and participation in the opposite direction by encouraging International filmmakers to venture to Russia’s own festivals and events.


Additional information and photos:

Sophie Hunt / DDA PR on behalf of Roskino
+ 33 (0) 6 66 67 69 58;

- Elena Barkova, press secretary ROSKINO
+ 7 926 996-41-45;

ROSKINO Strategic Partners


ROSKINO Media Partners