Seven Ukranian filmmakers have urged for a cultural boycott of Russia, claiming it would be “an attempt to cleanse the world of the propaganda of a terrorist state”.
Statements have been released by several filmmakers including Volcano director Roman Bondarchuk, Valentyn Vasyanovych (Atlantis) and Nariman Aliev (Homeward) explaining their reasoning.
“Ukrainians are defending their freedom and right to exist,” Bondarchuk recently said in a statement obtained by The Guardian, while also criticising opera singer Anna Netrebko who cancelled performances at the Met in New York.
“We need help. It is necessary to limit the influence of Russian culture in the world. Culture prepared the ideological basis for this war … Help Ukraine survive this war.”
Vasyanovych added: “It is necessary to lower the iron cultural curtain around Russia. Stop any cultural collaborations with representatives of a terrorist country that threatens to destroy the whole world.
“Stop all communication with directors who continue to live in the Soviet or Soviet paradigm and promote messages poisoned by imperial ideology in the civilised world.”
In 2020, Aliev directed Homeward, which told the story of Crimean Tatars and those who were deported in 1944.
“[Russia is] no longer ashamed to attack a sovereign country in front of the eyes of the world, having no right or reason to do so,” he said.
“Russian culture has always been an instrument for legalising all crimes committed and committed by their authorities … The boycott of Russian cinema and culture is an attempt to cleanse the world of the propaganda of a terrorist state.”
Meanwhile, Netflix has suspended its service in Russia entirely in protest of the country’s invasion of Ukraine.
Other companies to pull out of Russia include Spotify, which shuttered its Moscow office indefinitely earlier this month, and Apple, which has halted all product sales in the country.