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PRODUCTION / FUNDING France / Lithuania / Latvia

Giedre Zickyte prepping Masha

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- The Lithuanian documentarian’s new feature centres on the legacy of Russian photographer Masha Ivashintsova

Giedre Zickyte prepping Masha
Director Giedre Zickyte

Lithuanian director Giedre Zickyte is currently developing her new documentary feature, entitled Masha. This is the documentarian’s third feature, following her debut, How We Played the Revolution (2012), and her sophomore film, Master and Tatyana (2015).

On this occasion, Zickyte will explore the legacy of Russian photographer Masha Ivashintsova (1942-2000), who was heavily involved in the Leningrad poetry scene and was part of the local underground photography movement from the 1960s to the 1980s. Masha was a prolific artist throughout her life, and she hoarded her photo-films in the attic and rarely developed them. Later, in 2017, her daughter Asya found some 30,000 negatives and made Masha’s work public.

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Speaking about her project, Zickyte told Cineuropa: “Along with the negatives, there was another treasure: dozens of diaries, full of poetry and passion, marked with dates, places and names... A record of Masha’s inner life, worthy of a Dostoyevsky novel. I couldn’t pass up the opportunity to dive into Masha’s world, and I feel very thankful to Christine [Le Goff, one of the documentary’s producers], who trusted me and helped me to tell this story. I am interested in exploring how, through this discovery, the hidden life of a woman artist emerges, as well as an unseen portrait of an era.”

The project was recently pitched at the IDFA Forum, Riga’s Baltic Sea Docs and Edinburgh Pitch. Moreover, it won an Honorary Mention at this year’s Hot Docs Forum and received a Can $2,000 prize.

Masha is being produced by Christine Le Goff and Manuel Cattau for France’s ZED, Giedre Zickyte for Lithuania’s Moonmakers and Uldis Cekulis for Latvia’s VFS Films. Principal photography will begin later this autumn.

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