Fenster nach Paris1993
Window to Paris (Russian: Окно в Париж ) is a 1993 Russian drama film directed by Yuri Mamin.
Some French friends suggested that Yuri Mamin should make a joint Russian-French film, which led to the creation of the 1993 film "Window to Paris" or "Salade Russe". The film starts with residents of a Saint Petersburg communal apartment of 1990s finding a window hidden behind a cupboard that leads to a mansard roof and shows the effect of this discovery. The film is a grotesque prediction of the effect of fall of the Iron Curtain on the life in Europe, about the invasion of Russian demoralized businessmen and the humiliation of the intelligentsia in Russia.
At the end of the film, the main character, Nikolai Chizhov, a school music teacher and a member of the Russian intelligentsia, gives a persuasive speech to the children, who have decided to remain in Paris. In his words: You were born in a terrible time in a poor, devastated country. But it is your country, after all! Don't you want to make it better? At that time, this was a rather rare demonstration of patriotism; the authors of the film and all its actors were quite sincere.
As a division of Lenfilm, the film company Troitsky Most refused to participate in financing the project, thus putting the French partners on the edge of financial collapse and threatening the production of the film. Because of this situation, Yuri Mamin was urged to establish his own film company in order to attract support from commercial businesses that were thriving in post-Perestroika Russia. That is how Yuri Mamin's Fountain Fund for Support and Development of Cinematography was created.
The name of the fund, "Fountain", is from Mamin's preceding film that won the grand prize at a French film festival, which had been organized under the patronage of Madame Danielle Mitterrand, the wife of the French then-president François Mitterrand. It was this in particular that facilitated financing for the film "Window to Paris" from the French fund CNC.
The comedy "Window to Paris" attained such success in France and at the Berlin Film Festival that Michael Barker, the co-president of the American distribution company Sony Pictures Classics, arranged for the film to be released in the United States, and twice requested Goskino to submit the film "Window to Paris" for the 1994 Academy Award for Best Foreign Language Film.
Barker wrote: "The response to the film at screenings in Los Angeles and New York has been terrific with both the critics and the audiences. It seems to communicate the message of bringing two cultures together in a warm and enlightening manner... should 'Salade Russe' be the Official Russian Entry to the Academy for the Best Foreign Film Academy Award, we feel confident the picture will not only be nominated for the Award, but has a very good chance to ultimately win the Award itself."
However, at that time Nikita Mikhalkov, with his freshly finished film "Burnt by the Sun", greatly wished to be considered for the Oscar. After the chairman of the Russian Oscar Committee, Elem Klimov, did not agree to submit Mikhalkov’s film to the competition, Mikhalkov demonstrated his outstanding skills in behind-the-scenes intrigues. Elem Klimov was immediately replaced by Mikhalkov's brother, Andrey Konchalovsky, who agreed to send the film "Burnt by the Sun" to the United States. Thus, Mamin was deprived of the opportunity to win the Oscar[citation needed ].
The members of the Russian Oscar Committee remain under the control of Nikita Mikhalkov, who shapes the politics of Russian cinematography. Therefore, in Mamin's opinion, neither the best nor the most talented films are being submitted to the American Film Academy, but rather the ones created by Mikhalkov's favorite artists. Nikita Mikhalkov is currently Vladimir Putin's cinematography adviser.
The idea of a mystical window, a dimensional portal between Russia and Paris, came to the mind of the Moscow screenwriter Felix Mironer long before Gorbachev's Perestroika. He told this idea to the filmmaker Aleksey German, who sold it 20 years later to Arkady Tigai, Yuri Mamin' co-author, for a bottle of cognac.
|Genre:||Tragikomödie, Filmkomödie, Melodram, Spekulativer Spielfilm|
|Viktor P. Mikhaylov|
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Best Supporting Actor or Actress
Sochi Open Russian Film Festival
Grand Prize of the Festival