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PRODUCTION / FUNDING Romania

Radu Jude finishes Uppercase Print in time for the Berlinale

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- The film explores the story of a 16-year-old who protested against the communist regime in 1981

Radu Jude finishes Uppercase Print in time for the Berlinale
Şerban Lazarovici in Uppercase Print (© Silviu Gheţie)

After Aferim! [+see also:
film review
trailer
interview: Radu Jude
film profile
]
, Scarred Hearts [+see also:
film review
trailer
interview: Radu Jude
film profile
]
, The Dead Nation [+see also:
film review
trailer
film profile
]
and “I Do Not Care If We Go Down in History as Barbarians” [+see also:
film review
trailer
film profile
]
, Romanian director Radu Jude is strengthening his position as the country’s most dedicated and prolific explorer of the past with Uppercase Print [+see also:
trailer
film profile
]
, a film that will premiere in the Forum sidebar of the impending Berlinale (20 February-1 March - see the news). Jude is also present in the Forum sidebar with The Exit of the Trains [+see also:
film review
trailer
interview: Adrian Cioflâncă
film profile
]
, a documentary he co-helmed with historian Adrian Cioflâncă.

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Based on a stage play directed by Gianina Cărbunariu, Uppercase Print is co-written by Jude and Cărbunariu, and delves into events that took place in 1981. Mugur Călinescu, a 16-year-old student from the city of Botoşani, wrote anti-communist messages on the walls of the local headquarters of the Communist Party. His story is presented as it is related in the extensive file kept by the Secret Police, whose agents observed, apprehended and interrogated the teenager.

Jude contrasts the re-enactment of Călinescu's ordeal with Romania's official history in 1981, as shown by Romanian National Television. “The juxtaposition of the two – secret vs public, personal vs collective, small-scale heroism vs general submissiveness – showcases repression as only cinema can,” says an official presentation of the project.

Şerban Lazarovici plays the protagonist, while Bogdan Zamfir, Ioana Iacob, Şerban Pavlu and Alexandru Potocean tackle secondary characters. The film was produced by Ada Solomon, shot by Marius Panduru and edited by Cătălin Cristuţiu. The microFILM production received financial support from the Romanian National Film Center and was co-financed through the European Union’s Creative Europe programme.

Uppercase Print will be released in Romania immediately after its debut at the Berlinale, on 21 February. HiFilm Production is handling the local distribution, while the film is being represented internationally by Belgium’s Best Friend Forever.

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