The Guardian goes Ukraine

Have you got a unique story to tell about Ukraine? The British Council, together with The Guardian and Docudays UA have launched a programme to support the development and distribution of Ukrainian short docs. The presentation of these films will be on Docudays UA-2017.


During the closing ceremony of Docudays UA-2016 the results of "The Guardian Goes Ukraine" national contest were announced as well. The final pitching included six documentary projectsthree of which were awarded by the jury. The £5,000 grant from the British publication The Guardian has won the Match of Her Life project by Alisa Kovalenko. The British Council in Ukraine and Docudays UA have also chosen the winners. Docudays UA has granted £3,000 to Semen Mozhovy and his project The Story of the Winter Garden. The British Council gave the grant (£3,000) to the Lenin-Fall project by Svitlana Shymko.


Home Games” by Alisa Kovalenko is a story of 18-year-old football player, a member of young women football team “Ateсks” from Kyiv. The author says that football is probably the only thing that makes this girl happy. The director wants to answer questions why the girls choose to do sports professionaly, how it happens and how our society influences their choices.


The Story of the Winter Garden” by Semen Mozgovyi is a film about the flower pavilion of the former VDNH, the ambivalent feelings to the heritage of the former Soviet Union. Some of the VDNH employees support the space with all their hearts, but the changes come suddenly.


Svitlana Shymko describes the “Lenin-Fall ” as a film that demonstrates two ways of handling the soviet heritage. Her aim is not to oppose or compare these two ideas, but rather to show the ambiguity of decommunisation process and of the way independent Ukraine is dealing with these ghosts from the past.


Here six Ukrainian documentary projects that have been shortlisted by the judging panel: 


1. Alisa Kovalenko “Alina”

2. Glib Zhavoronkov “The Ferry Crossing”

3. Svitlana Shymko “Leninopad”

4. Victor Demidov “Furious”

5. Semen Mozgovyi “History Of The Winter Garden”

6. Anna Akulevich “Jamala”


We’re delighted to be working with the following leading film experts

Christine Bardsley, Film Advisor, British Council UK

Roman Bondarchuk, Artistic Director, Docudays UA  

Serhiy Bukovsky, Documentary filmmaker, professor at Karpenko-Karyy Film, Theatre and TV University 

Charlie Phillips, Head, The Guardian Documentary


Contact the Project Coordinators Darya Bassel and Victoria Leshchenko at [email protected], or read more about the programme here:

 31 — 9 
June 2024