Tag Archive for: They Came to Play

Posted by:  Len

Congratulations to our friend Alex Rotaru for the New York City theatrical release and good reviews generated by his latest documentary, “Shakespeare High.”  Cathy and I met Alex — who has also directed “Kids with Cameras” and “They Came to Play” — in late 2011 in Kazakhstan where I was helping to put on an American contemporary documentary film festival in Almaty and Shymkent.  Alex’s enthusiasm, passion for his subjects, and general joie de vivre are refreshing and inspiring, and both Cathy and I really enjoyed the time we spent with him, and learned much from our discussions of film making.

Alex was in Kazakhstan because “Kids with Cameras” was selected by an independent panel of experts for the American Film Showcase which is sponsored by the U.S. Department of State, and was being shown, subtitled in Russian, along with five other American documentaries in various cities in Kazakhstan.  Alex and film expert Diane Carson led discussions of his and the other films, had workshops with students, and helped introduce Kazakh audiences to a film genre that most were not familiar with.  Continuing Alex’s tradition of success, in February “Shakespeare High” was selected for the 2012 American Film Showcase.

Congratulations to Alex and those who worked on the other films chosen for AFS!  Your work goes around the world and helps audiences experience firsthand the amazing creativity and breadth of vision and experience of U.S. documentary filmmakers.   We hope that Surayia’s story will one day join AFS as well.