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The Dmitriev Affair

2023 / 96' Dir. Jessica Gorter Prod. Zeppers Film

The Dmitriev Affair

Jessica Gorter

Deep inside the Russian forests, against the wishes of the authorities, 60-year-old Yuri Dmitriev searches for mass graves from the era of Stalin’s terror against his own people, until one day he is arrested and sentenced to 15 years in a penal colony.

Yuri Dmitriev exhumes what the Russian rulers would rather forget. After years of searching the pine forests of Karelia in northwestern Russia, he discovers a mass grave containing thousands of people who were secretly executed during Stalin’s “Great Terror” of 1937. It is not the Russian government but Yuri Dmitriev who tracks down their identities in the archives and organizes commemorations for their next of kin. Thanks to his efforts, they finally find out what happened to their lost relatives. Having himself been left at a maternity clinic as a baby, he is a man on a mission: ‘Every human being has the right to know where they came from and where their family lies buried.’ While abroad there is increasing recognition for this “archaeologist of terror”, in Russia Dmitriev is discredited as someone collaborating with the West. Then he is arrested, on basis of a fabricated charge. Tragically accurate Dmitriev predicts his own future and that of his country.

Main Category: Documentary
Expected Completion: March 2023
Original Film Title: The Dmitriev Affair
English Film Title: The Dmitriev Affair
Production Year: 2023
Running Time: 96
Original Language: Russian · English
Colour / B&W: colour
Genre: Documentary
Major topic: Human rights
Keywords: human rights · war
Director: Jessica Gorter
Filmography Director: a.o. THE RED SOUL (feature doc, 2017), 900 DAYS (feature doc, 2011).
Main Production Company: Zeppers Film
Main Production - Person(s): Frank van den Engel
Main Production Company Phone: +31 20 6758594
Main Production Company E-mail: info@zeppers.nl
Main Production Company Website: www.zeppers.nl