European Filmmakers Write to Putin about Ukrainian Director

LONDON — Some of Europe’s top filmmakers — Pedro Almodovar, Ken Loach, Aki Kaurismaki and Mike Leigh, among them — have called on Russian President Vladimir Putin to clarify the status of detained Ukrainian director Oleg Sentsov.

In a letter sent Tuesday to Putin, other leading Russian politicians, including Minister of Culture Vladimir Medinsky, and the head of Russia’s security service FSB, Alexander Bortnikov, a group of 19 leading European directors and producers asked the Russian government to ensure the safety of Sentsov, and to make known his exact whereabouts.

They also asked that Sentsov be charged with a “recognizable offence or released,” and that the government “instigate a full, prompt and impartial investigation into the apparently arbitrary detention by the FSB in order to bring all those responsible to justice.”

The letter, which was the idea of the board of the European Film Academy, was also signed by helmers Stephen Daldry, Agnieszka Holland, Volker Schlondorff, Bela Tarr, Betrand Tavernier, Andrzej Wajda, Wim Wenders and Krzysztof Zanussi.

Sentsov was arrested by the FSB in his house in Simferopol, Crimea, on May 11, and taken to Moscow, where he is in prison awaiting trial on terrorism charges. Crimea, formerly a part of Ukraine, was annexed by Russia in March.

More Film

  • Les Arcs Film Festival

    Les Arcs European Film Festival's Industry Village Kicks Off with Strong Roster

    LONDON — Some of Europe’s top filmmakers — Pedro Almodovar, Ken Loach, Aki Kaurismaki and Mike Leigh, among them — have called on Russian President Vladimir Putin to clarify the status of detained Ukrainian director Oleg Sentsov. In a letter sent Tuesday to Putin, other leading Russian politicians, including Minister of Culture Vladimir Medinsky, and […]

  • Star Wars: The Last Jedi

    Box Office: 'Star Wars: The Last Jedi' Rockets to $215 Million Opening Weekend

    LONDON — Some of Europe’s top filmmakers — Pedro Almodovar, Ken Loach, Aki Kaurismaki and Mike Leigh, among them — have called on Russian President Vladimir Putin to clarify the status of detained Ukrainian director Oleg Sentsov. In a letter sent Tuesday to Putin, other leading Russian politicians, including Minister of Culture Vladimir Medinsky, and […]

  • Disney-Fox Deal Sets Up Scramble for

    Disney-Fox Deal Unleashes Flood of Free-Agent Executives, Talent

    LONDON — Some of Europe’s top filmmakers — Pedro Almodovar, Ken Loach, Aki Kaurismaki and Mike Leigh, among them — have called on Russian President Vladimir Putin to clarify the status of detained Ukrainian director Oleg Sentsov. In a letter sent Tuesday to Putin, other leading Russian politicians, including Minister of Culture Vladimir Medinsky, and […]

  • Anita Hill

    Anita Hill Chairs Hollywood Anti-Sexual Harassment Commission Formed by Top Execs

    LONDON — Some of Europe’s top filmmakers — Pedro Almodovar, Ken Loach, Aki Kaurismaki and Mike Leigh, among them — have called on Russian President Vladimir Putin to clarify the status of detained Ukrainian director Oleg Sentsov. In a letter sent Tuesday to Putin, other leading Russian politicians, including Minister of Culture Vladimir Medinsky, and […]

  • Warren Beatty

    Arnon Milchan Sues Warren Beatty Over 'Rules Don't Apply' Flop

    LONDON — Some of Europe’s top filmmakers — Pedro Almodovar, Ken Loach, Aki Kaurismaki and Mike Leigh, among them — have called on Russian President Vladimir Putin to clarify the status of detained Ukrainian director Oleg Sentsov. In a letter sent Tuesday to Putin, other leading Russian politicians, including Minister of Culture Vladimir Medinsky, and […]

  • Oscar Isaac Addams Family

    Oscar Isaac in Talks to Voice Gomez Addams in Animated 'Addams Family' Movie

    LONDON — Some of Europe’s top filmmakers — Pedro Almodovar, Ken Loach, Aki Kaurismaki and Mike Leigh, among them — have called on Russian President Vladimir Putin to clarify the status of detained Ukrainian director Oleg Sentsov. In a letter sent Tuesday to Putin, other leading Russian politicians, including Minister of Culture Vladimir Medinsky, and […]

  • Jennifer Lawrence

    Publicists for Jennifer Lawrence, Daisy Ridley, Amy Adams Form New Firm

    LONDON — Some of Europe’s top filmmakers — Pedro Almodovar, Ken Loach, Aki Kaurismaki and Mike Leigh, among them — have called on Russian President Vladimir Putin to clarify the status of detained Ukrainian director Oleg Sentsov. In a letter sent Tuesday to Putin, other leading Russian politicians, including Minister of Culture Vladimir Medinsky, and […]

More From Our Brands

Access exclusive content