04/23/2010 05:12 am ET Updated May 25, 2011

Kinofest NYC Film Festival, Feb. 25-28

I have the privilege to announce the first film festival devoted exclusively to Ukraine and the former Soviet Bloc! Over the weekend of February 25-28th, at the Ukrainian Museum in the East Village, we'll be bringing you a selection of feature and short films that provide a glimpse of developing cinematic talent arising from the memory of the Iron Curtain. These countries often share a complex historical narrative, which is evidenced by the numerous languages, ethnicities and religions that have their place in these modern day states.

Kinofest NYC is brought to you by a group of people who believe in the power of the individual narrative and the need to share the compelling story of the post-Soviet experience. I produced a documentary on the Orange Revolution in Ukraine ( and traveling across film festivals, found myself connecting with other films that were created in former Communist countries. I found that there was some shared experience there, and that learning about a different one broadened my horizons and understanding about this region, which was fairly limited to Ukraine.

Simultaneously, Andriy Kotliar was producing a monthly Ukrainian Film screening series called kinofilm project ( in Philadelphia. This past summer, he moved to the NYC area, and the idea for Kinofest NYC was born! As a filmmaker myself, I really wanted to set the bar high in terms of the quality of films we would show. So we have compiled some really spectacular and moving films made on Ukraine, Georgia, Poland, Belarus, and Lithuania! We are excited to bring you these films from far across the ocean, and to provide a venue to give an opportunity for new stories to be told here in New York, the most international city in the world! Come and join us!