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Lithuanian award gives the main prize to Kvedaravicius, filmmaker killed by the occupiers in Mariupol

06.06.2022, 12:05
Arno Strumilos
Arno Strumilos

The Lithuanian National Film Award Sidabrinė gervė (Golden Swan) gave the main prize to director Mantas Kvedaravičius, who died at the hands of the russian occupiers in Mariupol.

This was announced on the website of the President's Office.

Addressing the participants of the film award, President of Ukraine Volodymyr Zelenskyy assured them that Ukrainians will remember Mantas Kvedaravičius as a person who supported art that is for life.

"I will start this address with a short yet very important quote. 'If we live in some world, we hear some songs or radio, we watch some movies – this is all that creates us, creates our mentality.' These are the words of Mantas Kvedaravičius. He told them commenting on his film about Mariupol. A film with which he wanted to show how war affects the city. How war changes people," the President said.

According to him, art and culture, in all forms and in all senses, is what shapes people, educates them, or vice versa, keeps them in the dark, in the lies.

"That is why it is important to bear the truth. It is important to support art that is for life, not for those who want to destroy that life. Ukrainians will remember Mantas Kvedaravičius as a man who was just like that. He really deserves the Golden Swan. He valued life and always spoke out against what was life-threatening in his view – and that was a very attentive view," Zelenskyy said.

He called on the guests and participants of the Lithuanian National Film Award Sidabrinė gervė to be "just as attentive, so that you also support life."

The President's Office reports that the Lithuanian National Film Award Sidabrinė gervė was held under the patronage of the Prime Minister of the Republic of Lithuania Ingrida Šimonite. The award ceremony was broadcast live on Lithuanian national television.

It will be recalled that the death of Mantas Kvedaravičius in Mariupol became known in early April. It was initially reported that a missile hit his car. It was later reported that he had been captured and killed by the russian military.

The film "Mariupolis 2" has been created from the footage shot by Kvedaravičius before his death. The footage was preserved by his fiancée Hanna Bilobrova: she was in Mariupol with him. Bilobrova created "Mariupolis 2" together with film editor Dunya Sychova.

The jury of the Cannes Film Festival awarded a special prize in the L’Oeil d’Or category to the film "Mariupolis 2" by Lithuanian director Mantas Kvedaravičius, who was killed by russian invaders in Mariupol in early April.

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