20 Days in Mariupol

20 Days in Mariupol

Ukraine | 2023 | 94 min. | Mstyslav Chernov

August 25 - 31, 2023

A compilation of on-the-ground reporting at the onset of absolute devastation as a trio of Associated Press journalists get caught in Mariupol in the early days of the 2022 Russian invasion. Winner of the Sundance World Cinema Documentary Audience Award.

The August 25 screening is co-presented by the Meaningful Movies Project, with an opening performance by Ukrainian singer Stacee Fida and a Q&A with panelists Ivan Zavrazhnov and Vlad Bobrovnyk following the film.

The August 31 screening will be introduced and co-presented by the Ukrainian Association of Washington State.

February, 2022. A Russian assault on the Ukrainian coastal city of Mariupol is imminent. Associated Press video journalist Mstyslav Chernov, photographer Evgeniy Mololteka, and field producer Vasilisa Stepanenko are all that remain of the international media. Once the barrage begins, the journalists find themselves cut off from the rest of the world. Basics like food, water, and electricity are scarce to non-existent, but their mission remains unchanged: document the horrors of the invasion and get their reports to the outside world. Surrounded and under siege, they never stop recording the harrowing efforts of soldiers at the front lines and the doctors and nurses trying to staunch the casualties. They are lucky to get out with their lives after 20 days trapped in Mariupol and a perilous escape. Just as vital is the evidence that escapes with them. They have risked everything to capture the truth of Putin's crimes, standing as an incandescent refutation to his propagandistic lies about the early days of the Russian invasion.

—Betsy Cass

  • Director: Mstyslav Chernov
  • Country: Ukraine, USA
  • Year: 2023
  • Running Time: 94 min.
  • Producer: Mstyslav Chernov, Michelle Mizner, Raney Aronson Rath, Derl McCrudden
  • Screenplay: Mstyslav Chernov
  • Cinematographers: Mstyslav Chernov
  • Editors: Michelle Mizner
  • Music: Jordan Dykstra
  • Website: Official Film Website
  • Awards: Sundance Film Festival 2023 (Audience Award: World Documentary)
  • Filmography: Debut Feature FIlm
  • Language: English, Ukrainian, Russian
  • Has Subtitles: Yes
  • US Distributor: PBS Distribution
  • International Sales: Dogwoof

Stacee Fida

Guest Bios | August 25

Stacee Fida will be opening the event with a performance. Stacee is a singer, songwriter, performer and piano player from Ukraine. She has performed at festivals, events and other venues throughout Washingston state. She enjoys using music as a way to give positive emotions to her audience. Stacee will sing Пливе кача / “Plyve Kacha.” 

Ivan Zavrazhnov

Ivan Zavrazhnov is a TV director from Mariupol, in the profession for 17 years. Six months before the start of the big war, in September 2021, Ivan became a laureate of the film festival "Cinema and You" with the film Mirror of Azovmash about the bankruptcy of a machine-building plant. Since the full-scale invasion on February 24, 2022, he has been actively informing Mariupol residents about bomb shelters in different parts of the city, as well as how to protect themselves during the bombing. On March 2, 2022, the supply of electricity, water, gas and heat was cut off in Mariupol. The TV channel's office was burned down, and for the next 7 weeks Ivan and the rest of Mariupol tried to survive in a complete information vacuum. When Ivan's house was bombed by a Russian air bomb, he managed to leave Mariupol, surrounded on all sides by Russians. In October last year, Ivan and his mother came to the United States. Currently, he is a resident of Washington State.

Vlad Bobrovnyk

Vlad Bobrovnyk is a distinguished member of the Ukrainian Association of Washington State and a true trailblazer in the realm of community advocacy and humanitarian efforts, and will talk about the humanitarian needs for Ukraine and ways to help through the UAWS' humanitarian initiatives. Within UAWS, Vlad wears many hats. His focus on local and national political issues serves as a beacon, illuminating the path toward effective change. His involvement in the Association's outreach to local representatives underscores his dedication to amplifying the voices and concerns of the Ukrainian community. In his personal life, Vlad is also involved in directly supporting local organizations on the ground in Ukraine focused on providing medical services, and he also runs a Venture Capital firm which invests in Ukrainian startups.