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Volkodav iz roda serikh psov de Nikolai Lebedev (2006)


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He was doomed to die, but survives to avenge the annihilation of his clan. The last survivor from the tribe of the Grey Dogs becomes a mighty warrior and takes the name Wolfhound. Narrowly escaping death in the subterranean mines, Wolfhound sets off on a quest with his companion, the Earthbound Bat. He is determined to wreak vengeance on the Cannibal, who annihilated the abode of the Grey Dogs. Wolfhound finally reaches the castle where his arch enemy lives and savagely disposes of the Cannibal. He releases two prisoners from the dungeons, the sage Tilorn and bondmaid Niilit. With Wolfhound they come to the town of Galirad, which is torn apart by strife. Hoping to save the town from destruction, the ruler of Galirad gives the hand of his daughter Elen to the young warrior Vinitar, who vows to defend Galirad. The young princess is faced by a long journey to the lands of her future husband. She asks Wolfhound to be her bodyguard on this dangerous trek. Agreeing to serve the princess, Wolfhound finds himself caught up in a whirlwind of mysterious events that reveal the true aim of their journey...


The scale of the project for Wolfhound of the Grey Dog Clan (later referred to as Wolfhound) is unprecedented in post-Soviet cinema. No previous movie in the fantasy genre has been made in Russia, and certainly nothing based on national culture and history. Wolfhound marks not only the first 'Slavic fantasy' in Russian film production, but also the introduction of a new kind of positive hero. The film meets the demands of Russian moviegoers already eager to watch films made in Russia. This tendency responds to the development of Russian cinema as a whole, to moviegoers who prefer to seek answers to some questions in familiar moral coordinates.

In 2003 the company Central Partnership obtained the rights to produce a full-length film based on Maria Semyonova's novel Wolfhound, published by Azbuka, and also the rights to screen the remaining three novels in the series. Maria Semyonova is the author of several Russian bestsellers with a combined printing of 1 million, 800 thousand copies. The contribution made by her first novel Wolfhound to the total print run is 1 million 200 thousand copies, an unrivalled record for Russian fantasy.

First attempts to screen Wolfhound were undertaken by the NTV-Profit company, which obtained rights for the televised version of the novel. Dzhanik Faiziev was invited to direct the film, but work was halted due to a lack of funding.

When Central Partnership had to choose a director for the first full-length screen adaptation of Wolfhound they thought immediately of Nikolai Lebedev, whose last film Zvezda (The Star) revealed his directing talents in a new light. High artistic standards of direction, visual effects and the use of computer graphics in Zvezda proved Nikolai Lebedev's ability to make a high-budget film. After brief discussion it was decided that the director himself would write the screenplay. This took about a year to complete.

The budget for Wolfhound was reviewed several times, since most studios were ill-prepared to shoot a film with a complex production process: they lacked sets, costumes and props. Preparations for shooting had to start from scratch, and a whole new type of cinematography was created. The total budget for the movie came to 7.5 million dollars, which makes Wolfhound the most expensive Russian project to date.

Filming began in June 2004 with six weeks in Slovakia. During this time several new movie sets were built in Moscow – the ancient town of Galirad (with an area of 5 sq. km.), the sanctum, the inner chambers of the Cannibal's castle and the crossing over the Prepona. In September filming was resumed at Mosfilm and finally completed in December 2004. The post-production period, including work on visual effects, took about a year. The premiere of the film is slated for December 2005.


Website http://www.volkodaw.ru/

Teaser http://media.film.ru/volkodav/teaser.352x240.mpg


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