Filmmakers stage epic train journey to capture real Russia

Filmmakers stage epic train journey to capture real Russia

18 January 2013

A group of young filmmakers from around the world will spend a month travelling across Russia by train to produce six films that challenge cliches of Russia. The organisers of Cinetrain hope that the 25 filmmakers, most of whom have never been to Russia before, will be able to delve beneath the surface to produce a series of films that tackle stereotypes about women, vodka and bears.

Starting in Murmansk, north of the Arctic Circle, the group will travel to Irkutsk in eastern Siberia before returning to Moscow. All six of the films must be completed on board in time for their first screening in February. The filmmakers, who are from 15 different countries, were picked from hundreds of applicants in an international competition. Now in its third year, Cinetrain was launched in 2008 by producers Guillaume Protsenko and Tanya Petrik.

The project takes its inspiration from Soviet documentary filmmaker Alexander Medvedkin, who came up with the concept in the 1930s as a propaganda tool. Back then, film crews travelled in specially equipped wagons that enabled them to shoot, edit and screen movies on the spot.