@PaulR_Gregory: Tens of millions of people were scarred over the years by the Gulag. Does Russia want to talk about this? In a troll article: “These women in their 80s & 90s are all liars.”

Jan 08, 07:15 AM

Photo: Prisoner labor at construction of Belomorkanal, 1932. Note that it's almost impossible to find photos of women in Gulags.

Permissions: This work is in the public domain in Russia according to article 1281 of Book IV of the Civil Code of the Russian Federation No. 230-FZ of December 18, 2006 and article 6 of Law No. 231-FZ of the Russian Federation of December 18, 2006 (the Implementation Act for Book IV of the Civil Code of the Russian Federation)

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Marianna Yarovskaya, Muscovite documentary filmmaker, & Paul Gregory, Hoover, in re: Updated report on Women of the Gulag—the film is on the short list of ten for an Academy Award on the documentary short subject list! PG: “The reason I wasn’t flabbergasted was that it’s a very good subject, which Marianna did well, and I could not envision professional filmmakers’s not voting in favor of this film. I was much more optimistic than Marianna.” The documentary branch will vote for five of the ten in the next week, and an announcement on January 22. “If you make the final five, you get to look gorgeous on television as you wait for the envelope.” We have two goals with this: one is to sell the film the other is to have a wide audience see the film. JB: “You’ve taken one of the most serious subjects of the Twentieth Century and you’ve turned in into Hollywood. I’m gobsmacked.” PG: “This is a project now in its eighth year—we had no studios, no bigshots” [& no funding]; we did this on our own.”. JB: It’s a very moving, upsetting, carefully arranged presentation of what the Gulag did to women, and how they remember their lives. . . . . Back home, there is not universal celebration of the attention to the Gulag. There are tens of millions of people who were scarred over the years by the Gulag. Does Russia want to talk about this?” MY: I think that yes, there is a split, very political. No uniform opinion at the top, from the Kremlin, that the subject needs to be widely talked about. On one end Putin attends Solzhenitzyn’s museum, but they banned “The Death of Stalin.” For this film, first they accused me of being American; also, they were displeased that the film they made and spent a lot of money on did not make the short list. I’m not part of the club. VoA and Radio Freedom interviewed us; I found a troll article: These women in their 80s & 90s are all liars, and Marianna, a journalist who was trained at Moscow State University, is incompetent. . . .