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DISTRIBUTION Europe

IFFR streams Oleg Sentsov's Gaamer in support of the filmmaker

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- The festival is joining in with the actions being called for by European film professionals and will donate all proceeds to the filmmaker, who has been on hunger strike for over eight weeks

IFFR streams Oleg Sentsov's Gaamer in support of the filmmaker
Gaamer by Oleg Sentsov

Today marks the 60th day of Oleg Sentsov’s hunger strike. The Ukrainian filmmaker has been on a hunger strike in a Siberian prison since 14 May. Sentsov was involved in the Maidan protests, got arrested in May 2014 and was then sentenced to 20 years imprisonment. Amnesty International has closely followed developments in the case and called Sentsov’s trial “grossly unfair”.

International Film Festival Rotterdam (IFFR) world-premiered Sentsov's first and only film up to date Gaamer in 2012 and remained closely linked to the filmmaker ever since, urgently repeating its call for his release and safety. The festival is now making the film available to watch online via its streaming platform IFFR Unleashed. In an attempt to support Sentsov, the gathering -which had already signed a letter signed together with several Dutch film institutions to urge the European Parliament to do everything in its power to ensure his immediate release (read here)- directs all pay-per-view revenue towards supporting the filmmaker's case.

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IFFR is thus joining in with the actions being called for by European film institutions and professionals to urge Russia to rectify the filmmaker's situation. The European Film Academy (EFA) is repeatedly urging action to be taken against the imprisonment of the filmmaker, getting thousands of signatures supporting the cause (read news), and institutions such as the Federation of European Film Directors (FERA) have been tirelessly supporting the filmmaker.

Furthermore, on 14 June, MEPs at the European Parliament demanded that the Russian authorities immediately and unconditionally release the filmmaker and more than 70 Ukrainian citizens illegally detained in Russia and on the Crimean peninsula. The resolution was adopted by 485 votes to 76, with 66 abstentions.

Click here to watch the film and support Sentsov's cause.

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