Pavel G Vesnakov in post-production with his second feature, Windless
- The drama explores the passage of time and the consequences of memory through the eyes of a young man
Following his feature debut, German Lessons [+see also:
interview: Pavel G Vesnakov
film profile] (2020), Bulgarian director Pavel G Vesnakov is currently in post-production with Windless (working title), a drama about a young man facing his past. The project is being produced by Veselka Kiryakova through Red Carpet (Bulgaria), and co-produced by Alessandro Amato and Luigi Chimienti through Disparte (Italy).
The screenplay, written by Vesnakov, Simeon Ventsislavov, Teodora Markova, Nevena Kertova and Georgi Ivanov, focuses on Koko (Ognyan Pavlov), a young Bulgarian who has made a life for himself in Spain. He returns to his family's native provincial town to sell his late father's old flat, and also take care of his remains. As many of the town's buildings are being torn down in order to make room for a big investment project involving a casino, a hotel and a golf course, Koko stays for a few more days in order to help his old friend Matches (Veselin Petrov) clear belongings in a number of buildings that are soon to be demolished. But what exactly will disappear when the works are done?
The film’s budget amounts to circa €560,000, approximately €225,000 of which is coming from the Bulgarian National Film Center. The Italian Ministry of Culture and Eurimages have also supported the project. Windless was shot over slightly more than three weeks in the town of Buhovo, near Sofia. Orlin Ruevski (German Lessons) was the DoP. Supporting characters are played by Vasil Binev, Mihail Mutafov, Lidiya Vukova and Anna Bankina.
Veselka Kiryakova tells Cineuropa that Windless was supposed to be shot last year, but the change in the Bulgarian cinema law and the difficulties faced by the Bulgarian National Film Center led to the shoot being postponed. “It was really challenging to make the movie this year with a budget that was approved two years ago. But we made it, also with the great support we got from our co-producers at Disparte,” Kazakova explains.
As for the director, he says that his second feature has quite a different approach to his shorts and first feature. “My early films were filled with pessimism and negative energy towards the society we live in, but as time has passed, I have been much more inspired by auteurs like Abbas Kiarostami, rather than the Dardenne brothers, for example. Can a poetic view of life exist in our daily lives? [With Windless] I am trying to meditate on this existential question,” the director says. “Does our beginning start with our first memories of our parents and relatives, and what exactly does end with their death? How does the passage of time affect our perception of reality or, better, things that we have never known? Does the inanimate have memories? These are the topics that bother me much more than any social commentary,” Vesnakov further explains.
Loose plans are being made for a national release of Windless in October 2023, but this depends on festival selections.
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