Veselka Kiryakova • Producer
”Limitations give us the right impulse to be more open as producers”
by Vassilis Economou
- Bulgarian producer Veselka Kiryakova, working for outfit Red Carpet, is one of the participants of EFP’s 2018 Producers on the Move
Born in Bulgaria, producer Veselka Kiryakova graduated from the National Academy for Theatre and Film Arts in Sofia, where she studied Film Editing. After working in many Bulgarian and international shorts and documentaries as an editor, Kiryakova produced in 2013 her first feature film, Alienation [+see also:
interview: Milko Lazarov
film profile] directed by also debutant Milko Lazarov. The film that premiered in Venice Days also received two awards. Her second production was Kristina Grozeva's and Petar Valchanov's multi-awarded and well-travelled Glory [+see also:
interview: Petar Valchanov
interview: Petar Valchanov, Kristina G…
film profile] (2016). In her latest production, she collaborates again with Lazarov in the Bulgarian-German-French co-production Ága [+see also:
interview: Milko Lazarov
film profile] that premiered Out of Competition at the 2018 Berlinale and won the Best Film Award at Fajr International Film Festival (news). Kiryakova, producing for Red Carpet, is one of the participants of EFP's 2018 Producers on the Move initiative at the 71st Cannes Film Festival.
Cineuropa: You have already produced three films, which one do you think is the most important for you?
Veselka Kiryakova: I am really proud for my last film, Ága directed by Milko Lazarov. It was a really long and even more risky adventure for all of us. It was certainly not an easy task to shoot a film in such a remote area as Yakutia. The weather conditions were extremely harsh for everybody as we started shooting at -30 °C. For some scenes we also had to shoot in the middle of the frozen Lena river, where we had to build an authentic yurt. Furthermore, we decided to shoot on film stock, and the transportation of the stock from Yakutsk to Paris was another adventure as we re-organized it around seventeen times! It was a crazy task, but we succeeded. I was very lucky that I’ve collaborated with a wonderful crew both from Bulgaria and Yakutia and my partners from Germany and France supported us all the way.
As you are based in Bulgaria, what could be the main advantages producing there?
As you know, Bulgaria is a small country, hence the film community is also not big and of course the annual budget offered for film productions is quite limited. On the positive side, these limitations give us the right impulse to be more open as producers and even more active to seek for international co-productions.
How can “Producers on the Move” help you?
I’m expecting to improve myself through this participation by gaining new knowledge, especially in the field of production. I also hope that the initiative will help me to meet new future partners and possibly friends.
As your previous film was quite recent, do you already have any upcoming projects?
Actually, I have three projects by Bulgarian debutant filmmakers that are all in development stage, Dora directed by Grigor Antonov (a film that is based on a Milko Lazarov’s idea), Son by Dimitar Sardjev, and Driver by Nikolay Vasilev. Finally, I’m in pre-production of a children’s TV series that is produced by the Bulgarian National Television and we are planning to shoot this summer.
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