Bulgaria, UK, France

Synopsis

This heart-warming tale presents a pivotal moment for Britain: the housing crisis, gentrification, Brexit and a Bulgarian migrant family fighting their increasingly xenophobic working-class neighbours in a London council estate. An apparently owner-less cat which has had enough of the heated atmosphere, barricades itself 'in the wall', requiring the residents to collaborate.

Directors Statement

CAT IN THE WALL, set on a council estate in modern day London, deals with the impossible relationship between migrants and locals, and the threat gentrification brings to communities living on social welfare.Media manipulations on the eve of Brexit caused a sharp increase in racist violence and hate speech throughout Britain, especially towards economic migrants. I, Mina Mileva have been an economic migrant there for more than 20 years. I’m in love with Britain and its famous culture of acceptance, tolerance and humour. I escaped the ugly face of post-Communist Capitalism in Bulgaria and have enjoyed professional fulfillment on the island. For me this film is lamenting the loss of compassion and normality that I first found there.The script is based on my personal experience and events taking place in my neighbourhood.An astronomic service charge bill and a row about a stolen cat characterised the absurd situation I have found myself in and provided for an unusual narrative. Vesela and I decided to stay in one place, one apartment. These semi-claustrophobic settings helped us study the nuanced process of dehumanisation. A process spiced up with every-day-racism and prejudies and deeply caused by fear of losing social assets.One of the most important challenges for us as directors was to preserve the authenticity of events and people from that enclave and to represent it correctly. We choose a combination of actors and non-actors and lead them through a demanding casting and rehearsal process in order to preserve the life-like feel.

Director's Biography

Mina and Vesela’s internationally acclaimed documentaries have gained them the nickname “Demonic Duo” in Bulgaria. UNCLE TONY, THREE FOOLS AND THE SECRET SERVICE, revealing power games in the film industry under Communism, created a “tempest of far greater proportions than a teacup” (Variety). Several institutions were involved in chasing the authors over false allegations of copyright breach. At the same time, the film was screened in cinemas in Bulgaria for seven months and received 11 international awards and important selections. Their second film, THE BEAST IS STILL ALIVE, linking current political figures to the shady Communist past, was pulled down from broadcast because representatives of the Bulgarian socialist party (former Communists) were offended. The duo moved into fiction film directing but they are still passionate about documentaries and run the European projectKinedok in partnership with seven European countries. They also work on several European co-productions

FILMOGRAPHY:
2019 CAT IN THE WALL
2016 THE BEAST IS STILL ALIVE, doc.
2014 UNCLE TONY, THREE FOOLS AND THE SECRET SERVICE, doc.
2008 BECAUSE OF HER, doc.
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Cast & Crew

Directed by: Mina Mileva, Vesela Kazakova

Written by: Mina Mileva, Vesela Kazakova

Produced by: Mina Mileva, Vesela Kazakova

Cinematography: Dimitar Kostov

Editing: Donka Ivanova

Production Design: Yuliya Kunova

Costume Design: Yuliya Kunova

Make-Up & Hair: Yuliya Kunova

Original Score: Andy Cowton

Sound: George Marinov

Main Cast: Irina Atanasova (Irina), Angel Genov (Vladimir)

Casting: Kerry Koprivlenska

Nominations and Awards

  • EFA Feature Film Selection 2020