Second day. Press conference in a cinema. There seems to be a huge interest in the fact that a documentary competition has been included in the MIFF (Moscow International Film Festival). I do not recall having seen so many people attending a festival press meeting on documentary films. A good moment for stating that the documentary film genre experiences an international popularity, but also the moment to say, as did Alexander Gutman (photo) (juror together with Michael Apted and me), that the conditions for documentarians in Russia are far from being perfect. There are seldom documentaries in the cinemas, the film support system does not encourage coproductions with other countries, and apart from the tv channel Kultura Russian television has no interest in showing artistic documentaries.
The first screening of the seven films in competition took place in the evening in the multiplex cinema ”October”. Quite a big number of spectators came to watch ”Czech Peace”, the one hour version, directed by Filip Remunda and Vit Klusak.
The day ended with the celebration of Sergey Miroshnichenko’s 56 year’s birthday. As it was said, he could get no better present than seeing his dream come through on that very same day – having a documentary competition at the MIFF this year. Miroshnichenko is currently working on the completion of ”Born in the USSR – 28”, a series he started following the model of the British 7Up, directed by Michael Apted. Miroshnichenko filmed the kids, born in a country that no longer exists, when they were 7 and 14 and 21. The 28-version is planned to come out at the end of this year.