Jordan Todorov: Dad Made Dirty Movies

His name was originally Stephen Apostolof, but having fled communist Bulgaria, entering the American Film Dream factory, Hollywood, he changed to an artist name, A.C. Stephen, which is not and will not become a big name in film history, apart from being a part of the sexploitation period, the softcore one before the hard core ”Deep Throat”, a short period that also included Ed Wood, the man who always gets the credit for having made the world’s worst movie… maybe that nomination should have gone to A.C. Stephen for his ”Orgy of the Dead”, where half naked women were dancing on the graves of the dead, swinging their breasts around while also trying to make original ballet steps! Quite something!

The story about A.C. is told by critics and professionals who worked with him, and first and foremost his children and last (out of 3) wives, with numerous clips from the kitsch films, quite entertainingly made and fun to watch because of its quick editing and the many anecdotes connected to the one and only A.C. Stephen, whose career suffered a lot in his last years when there was no more space for the soft pornography.

The filmmaker makes the youngest kid of A.C. take the ashes of his father – kept in a cigar humidor (!), a very appropiate reference to film producing and film producers in Hollywood with big cigars in mouth – into a car to drive him to be buried at a proper place for a man, who made the American dream come through and then fell from the heights.

Bulgaria, 2011, 58 mins.

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Tue Steen Müller
Tue Steen Müller

Müller, Tue Steen
Documentary Consultant and Critic, DENMARK

Worked with documentary films for more than 20 years at the Danish Film Board, as press officer, festival representative and film consultant/commissioner. Co-founder of Balticum Film and TV Festival, Filmkontakt Nord, Documentary of the EU and EDN (European Documentary Network).
Awards: 2004 the Danish Roos Prize for his contribution to the Danish and European documentary culture. 2006 an award for promoting Portuguese documentaries. 2014 he received the EDN Award “for an outstanding contribution to the development of the European documentary culture”. 2016 The Cross of the Knight of the Order for Merits to Lithuania. 2019 a Big Stamp at the 15th edition of ZagrebDox. 2021 receipt of the highest state decoration, Order of the Three Stars, Fourth Class, for the significant contribution to the development and promotion of Latvian documentary cinema outside Latvia. In 2022 he received an honorary award at DocsBarcelona’s 25th edition having served as organizer and programmer since the start of the festival.
From 1996 until 2005 he was the first director of EDN (European Documentary Network). From 2006 a freelance consultant and teacher in workshops like Ex Oriente, DocsBarcelona, Archidoc, Documentary Campus, Storydoc, Baltic Sea Forum, Black Sea DocStories, Caucadoc, CinéDOC Tbilisi, Docudays Kiev, Dealing With the Past Sarajevo FF as well as programme consultant for the festivals Magnificent7 in Belgrade, DOCSBarcelona, Verzio Budapest, Message2Man in St. Petersburg and DOKLeipzig. Teaches at the Zelig Documentary School in Bolzano Italy.

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