Lithuania selected an internationally co-produced drama ( Lithuania, France, Ukraine and Poland) film Frost as entry for the Best Foreign Language Film at the 90th Academy Awards. It is written and directed by Šarūnas Bartas and casts among others: Mantas Jančiauskas, Lyja Maknavičiūtė, Vanessa Paradis, Veronika Rosati and Andrzej Chyra, the last two: Polish actors.
The young Lithuanian Rokas (played by Mantas Janciauskas) drives with his girlfriend Inga (Lyja Maknaviciute) a humanitarian aid truck to Ukraine, to war-torn Donbass region. They meet different war reporters, one of whom is played by Vanessa Paradis.
In the film two actual Ukrainian soldiers explain to the protagonists why they are fighting. Film is shot on the road and on the location over a period of around three months. The movie was filmed in frontline towns of Krasnohorivk, Kurakhove, Marinka and some scenes were shot as close as 200-300 meters from the frontline. Frost was also shot in Kyiv, Dniepro in Ukraine, in Lithuania and in Poland.
The title of the film was born already in 1991 as the director says: ”when Soviet tanks tried to occupy Lithuanian radio and television and a television tower.” “Then I filmed my first long-length film,” recalled the director for the French television ARTE. “But when I heard that the tanks arrived, I stopped and, before spring, I was filming a documentary about what was happening in Lithuania. Then it was very snowy and cold, all the trees looked like Christmas trees. ’
The material he collected at that time he named „Frost“ . During shooting his film in Ukraine the weather conditions were similar to those back in January 1991. That is how name „Frost“ was born.
Frost was screened in the Director’s Fortnight section at the 2017 Cannes Film Festival. It was nominated at Haifa International Film Festival for Carmel Award in the category Best International Film, at Lisbon & Estoril Film Festival Jaeger – LeCoultre Best Film Award and Odessa International Film Festival for Golden Duke for Best Film.
This year record number of 92 films have been submitted for consideration in this year’s foreign-language Oscar race.
Among the first-time entrants are Haiti, Honduras, Lao People’s Democratic Republic, Mozambique, Senegal, and Syria.
Final final five nominations in the category Best Foreign Film will be announced on January 23. The Oscars will be held on Sunday, March 4 2018 and will be broadcast live to more than 225 countries.
See trailer here: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=93acrZ2dnqY
We would like to thank the Embassy of Lithuania to the Kingdom of the Netherlands for their support in creation of this article.
Sources: Embassy of Lithuania in the Kingdom of the Netherlands, Hollywood reporter, variety, http://www.imdb.com/title/tt6464290/, https://www.delfi.lt/veidai/kinas/kanuose-ovacijomis-palydetas-s-barto-serksnas-atkeliauja-i-lietuvos-kino-teatrus.d?id=75275927, Wikipedia
Photos: screen photos from the trailer, Youtube