The Color of the Chameleon vies for an Oscar
by Stefan Dobroiu
- Emil Hristov's first feature was selected to represent Bulgaria at next year's Oscars
One of the best received Bulgarian films in recent years, The Color of the Chameleon [+see also:
interview: Emil Christov
film profile] (photo) was selected to represent the country at the Academy Awards in the Best Foreign Film category.
First feature of cinematographer Emil Hristov (Zift [+see also:
film profile]), The Color of Chameleon tells the story of Batko (Ruscen Vidinliev), an intelligent and charming young man who is hired as an informant by the Bulgarian secret police during the communist era. A mistake gets him fired and Batko, confident that spying is his true vocation, reinvents himself by creating an alternative network of spies, which he plans to use in order to mess with the new regime.
Based on Vladislav Todorov's (also a producer) popular novel Zincograph, The Color of the Chameleon became Hristov's feature debut after the film's first director withdrew from the production six months before shooting was supposed to begin.
The film was screened last year in the Discovery sidebar of the Toronto International Film Festival and was then awarded the Golden Rose Grand Prix at the 31st Varna Film Festival, also winning a Special Mention at the Thessaloniki festival. Domestically released by A+Cinema during the first weekend of April, The Color of the Chameleon sold 10,000 tickets over the following 20 weeks of screenings.
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