Family values are deep-rooted in Azerbaijan, and have been passed down from generation to generation since time immemorial. Care of youngsters, and respect for the elderly are cherished traditions in our country.
A premiere of the movie “Ali and Nino” took place at the Heydar Aliyev Center, October 5.
Azerbaijan’s First Lady, President of the Heydar Aliyev Foundation Mehriban Aliyeva and Vice-president of the Foundation, head of the project and executive producer Leyla Aliyeva attended the movie’s presentation ceremony.
The creative staff of the movie too participated in the presentation of the film, shot on the basis of the same-name world bestseller of writer Gurban Said.
The premiere started with the walking of famous actors that had played in the movie on a red carpet.
A video address of Adam Bakri, the player of the main character, was shown before the movie’s demonstration. He expressed his regret for not being able to participate in the premiere. Adam Bakri said he enjoyed the role he revived in the movie. Speaking in Azerbaijani, the actor said: “I spent a very good time in Azerbaijan, and I was honoured to have met you.”
Then, show of the movie took place.
Starting with words concerning the onset of the First World War, 50 percent of the world oil production falling to Azerbaijan’s share, and our country’s location at the crossroads of the East and West, the movie arouses great interest, from the very first sequences, in a spectator. Reviving landscapes of the old Baku before eyes, knowing no boundaries in the person of Ali - a representative of a warm-blooded and proud people, presenting a lofty love story, neglecting every rank, with great mastery and professionalism, the movie’s successes may be plainly seen today.
With shooting done during 2015, “Ali and Nino”’s plotline has been built on two young people’s love story on the background of the Azerbaijani people’s struggle for independence and the occupation of our country by the Bolshevik early in the 20th century.
Producer of the movie is Chris Thykier, director Asif Kapadia - a BAFTA Prize winner, and screenwriter Academy Award laureate Christopher Hampton.
Shootings took place in various places of Baku, as well as in Gobustan, Khynalyg, Ganja and Gadabey. With main characters played by Adam Bakri (Ali) and Maria Valverde (Nino), such other famous actors as Fakhraddin Manafov, Halit Ergenc, Mandy Patinkin, Connie Nielsen, Riccardo Scamarcio, Homayoun Ershardi, Asad Buab, Numan Acar etc. had roles in this 104-minute movie.
“Ali and Nino” was first demonstrated within the influential international movie festival “Sundance” of USA on January 27, 2016. During three days, the movie was presented in the category of “Premiere”. The movie, which is being presented to the general public for the first time, is also on the agenda of the world press. Foreign press highly appreciated the soundtrack and cinematography of “Ali and Nino”. In media materials, the movie’s soundtrack is characterized as nostalgic, at the same time, romantic, sad, yet hopeful. It is mentioned that most part of the movie has been shot according to the original work, and that it reflects positive and negative sides of the two young people’s relations, and the external pressure that they are exerted on. It is noted that Adam Bakri and Maria Valverde could skilfully revive sentimental traits of their characters and always remain cold-blooded, even at the most difficult moments.
After the demonstration of the film, producer Chris Thykier, delivering a speech, said: “In fact, today is a world premiere of the movie “Ali and Nino”. He thanked Mehriban Aliyeva for the support provided to the production of the movie.
Saying “I am watching a movie dubbed in Azerbaijani for the first time. I’m hopeful the movie will have great success. We were very pleased to have shot a movie in this country, and we very much liked your country”, Chris Thykier underscored movie producer Leyla Aliyeva’s passion for work, her creative ideas, and the support she provided to the general process.
Then Chris Thykier invited Leyla Aliyeva, Christopher Hampton, Maria Valverde and Newman Acar onto the scene.
Film critics too have their rich impressions about the film, in which representatives of different states and nationalities are talked about.
According to screenwriter of the film Christopher Hampton, “Ali and Nino” is an unusual work. The film gave him a chance to get to know Azerbaijan more closely. “Although the country’s territory is not big, it has different geographical positions, climate and forests, which is very interesting. Your people is very kind. I’ve had very good time here.”, said Christopher Hampton. Saying he had worked with a number of projects, Christopher Hampton brought to attention that this project was very interesting for him, be it the shooting process, or in terms of the subject.
The film will be demonstrated in Azerbaijan at “CinemaPlus” network of cinemas, starting from October 6. The movie is in Azerbaijani and English languages.
The Asian World Film Festival chose the movie “Ali and Nino” to be demonstrated at the opening ceremony of the Festival, to start on October 24.