On Wednesday, March 16th, we held a celebration at the Russian Cultural Center in D.C. for the upcoming shooting of a documentary film, “Fort Ross.” The star-studded event was packed out with people interested in hearing about the movie.
Supporting and funding films is a new business venture for us, and we’re happy to help great projects get off the ground. RACC’s own Andrei Shuranov, CEO, is a producer for the film. His main objective is to forge connections between America and Russia, since relations have been quite strained in the past.
“Fort Ross,” which is based off the book of the same title by Dmitri Poletaev, tells the story of the Aleut land that extended from Alaska to Northern California and was owned by Russia in the 18th and 19th centuries. Poletaev is the moving force behind the film. In addition to writing the book, he executive produced and wrote “Fort Ross.”
Also signed onto the movie is famous actor Dmitry Kharatya, who is the producer and narrator. Interestingly enough, Kharatyan became involved with “Fort Ross” because he is old friends with Poletaev. They met when they were both studying acting at the well-respected Shepkin’s Theatrical Institute. Another reason that Kharatyan is working on the movie is because his ancestors were Aluet, so he is able to return to his roots. A member of his family ran a trading company between Russia and the United States and married an Aleut woman.
Director and Producer of “Fort Ross” is award-winning Yury Moroz, who, in his 20 years of creating films, has earned the admiration of the industry and the people of Russia. Along with directing well-known films in Russia, in 2006 Moroz captured the attention of American audiences when his film “The Spot” won him the “Silver Hugo” award at the Chicago International Film Festival.
The one-hour-long “Fort Ross” documentary is going to cost anywhere from $70,000 to $100,000 and after it comes out, a feature-length movie that stars Russian, American, and Spanish actors is going to be made. Moroz’s production company, Moroz Studios, is making both films. The feature-length version will be released before the summer of 2012 to coincide with American year in Russia, when citizens will strive to learn more about the foreign land. The Russian Ministry of Culture has donated $2 million to the project, but Poletaev is currently looking for more funding and donations.
The goal is to strengthen ties between America and Russia through both of the “Fort Ross” movies and we hope that American audiences watch and like the film. We’ll keep you updated on the shooting and provide more information as it comes to light. We are very excited to see the finished products and anticipate that they will be informative and fascinating films.