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PRODUCTION Bulgaria / Serbia / France

Stephan Komandarev currently shooting Rounds

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- A co-production between Bulgaria, Serbia and France, the film is the second part in a trilogy that began with Directions

Stephan Komandarev currently shooting Rounds
Stephan Komandarev (right) on the set of Rounds

Bulgarian director Stephan Komandarev (The World is Big and Salvation Lurks around the Corner [+see also:
trailer
film profile
]
) is currently shooting Rounds [+see also:
film review
trailer
interview: Stephan Komandarev
film profile
]
 (the working title for which was Patrol Cars), the second part in a trilogy that started with his previous film, Directions [+see also:
film review
trailer
interview: Stephan Komandarev
film profile
]
. A co-production between Argo Film, represented by Komandarev and Katya Trichkova, Serbian production company See Film Pro, represented by Nenad Dukic, and French outfits Deuxième Ligne Films (Marie Dubas) and EZ Films (Elie Meirovitz), Rounds will be completed by the summer of 2019.

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The screenplay, written by Simeon Ventsislalov and Komandarev himself, is inspired by real-life events and follows three teams of police officers over the course of one night in Sofia, exactly 30 years after the fall of the Berlin Wall (9 November 1989) and the fall of communism in Bulgaria (10 November 1989). Through the events faced by the police officers, Rounds will analyse the current state of affairs in Bulgaria. The film’s DoP is Vesselin Hristov, and the main parts are played by Irini Jambonas, Stefan Denolyubov, Assen Blatechki, Ivan Barnev and Stoyan Doytchev.

Producer Katya Trichkova tells Cineuropa that production started with extensive rehearsals in September, followed by a few days of preliminary shots in October. The rest of the shooting days are planned for November and December, with a wrap expected at the beginning of January. The total budget amounts to €380,000. The Bulgarian National Film Centre supported the project to the tune of €75,000. Film Center Serbia and Eurimages also supported the production.

Komandarev tells Cineuropa that he has decided to use a similar structure to that seen in Directions, but Rounds has fewer characters, allowing the movie to “develop them in much more depth and follow them until the resolutions of their stories”. While Directions centred on taxi drivers and Rounds hinges on police officers, the final film in the trilogy, now at a very early stage of development, will focus on ambulance paramedics.

Rounds will be released domestically next autumn, most probably in the first half of November, when Bulgaria will be celebrating 30 years since the fall of communism.

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