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Christo Grozev and team behind "Navalny" win Oscar for best documentary


Bulgarian investigative journalist Christo Grozev together with the team that created the film "Navalny" have won Oscar for best documentary feature. A month earlier, the film received the prestigious BAFTA Film Award but the Bulgarian journalist, who is wanted by Russia, was not present at the ceremony for security reasons.

"We owe so much to Bulgarian Christo Grozev. Christo, you have risked everything to tell this story," director Daniel Roher said during the Academy Awards ceremony in Dolby Theater in Los Angeles. The investigative journalist was present on the stage together with members of the family of Russian opposition leader Alexei Navalny, who has been imprisoned by the Kremlin in a penal colony.

My husband is in prison just for telling the truth and defending democracy. Alexei, I am dreaming of the day when you will be free and our country will be free. Stay strong, my love,“ Navalny's wife, Yulia Navalnaya, said on stage.

"The Oscar is pragmatically useful," Hristo Grozev later told bTV. „Now the film will be watched by at least another 20 million people. This means that viewers will be exposed to the facts that we present in this documentary: Russia has a program for killing and eliminating its own citizens, anyone who has the courage to go against the government or run for president.”

"Navalny" focuses on the plot to poison the Russian opposition politician on August 20, 2020 and the Kremlin's role in the assassination attempt. "The film was largely Bulgarian - the idea is Bulgarian and a large part of the financing at the beginning was mine," said Christo Grozev, who has been investigating the Russian secret services since 2014. He told Nova TV that the documentary was filmed in complete secrecy due to constant monitoring and disinformation attempts by Russia.

"I have received information from people close to Putin that after he saw the film, he was furious. I suppose that the film has something to do with the fact that my life is in danger," the investigative journalist pointed out. Asked if he was afraid, he said he did not feel that way. "It's more about avoiding the dangers, so I can keep doing what I'm doing for longer."

Other Bulgarians who have been part of Oscar winning teams are actor Dimitar Marinov, who participated in the film "The Green Book" by the director Peter Farrelly, Georgi Borshukov for the visual effects in "The Matrix", Vladimir Koilazov for overall contribution in the category of "Science and Engineering Technologies”.

English: Al. Markov
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