Home News Director Navalny and Canadian director Daniel Rohr in the whirlwind of Oscar night

Director Navalny and Canadian director Daniel Rohr in the whirlwind of Oscar night

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Canadian director Daniel Rohr receives the Academy Award for Best Documentary Feature, at the Dolby Theater in Hollywood, California on March 12.Patrick T Fallon/AFP/Getty Images

Toronto filmmaker Daniel Rohr has observed criminals, murderers, and Kremlin spies, so you’d think a few would piss the guy off. after the exit Navalny Much of the tension exploded last Sunday night at the Dolby Theater in Los Angeles, as Ahmir “Questlove” Thompson read out for Best Documentary Feature at the 95th Annual Academy Awards.

“I put my wife’s hand on my chest to feel how fast my heart is beating,” the director recalls.

Rohr wasn’t worried about palpitations. At just 29, the Canadian filmmaker is now forever sealed in the Oscar history book, responsible for not only directing an Academy-approved documentary chronicling the struggles of Vladimir Putin’s number one enemy, opposition politician Alexei Navalny, but also for delivering one of his most memorable acceptance speeches. thriller of all time. The Modern History of the Academy Awards.

“Alexei, the world has not forgotten your vital message to all of us,” Roh said on stage as he accepted the award. We cannot, we must not be afraid to oppose tyrants and despotism. Wherever she raises her head.

Just 12 hours after his impressive win, Roh spoke to The Globe and Mail about the Oscar whirlwind.

How did you handle your expectations ahead of Sunday night’s party?

I entered the show not expecting to win, but I’m not ashamed to say I want the opportunity to say something in front of the whole world. That’s why I was so hopeful and anxious. Our fellow nominees’ films have been fantastic, Four Master Classes of Reality Cinema. You could have gone another way.

Was it always planned that Navalny’s wife, Yulia, would perform on stage?

It wasn’t a long shot in the making, but we did chat with the film crew about how we’d like to handle the moment if we win. We felt it was appropriate for me to speak on behalf of the team, and if Yulia is up to it, she can also deliver a brief message to the world. I was so happy to allow this exciting and meaningful moment.

Yulia Navalny, wife of imprisoned dissident Alexei Navalny, speaks alongside her daughter Daria at the Academy Awards.Carlos Parrea/Reuters

Follow me all night from the moment your movie wins.

It was the most extraordinary dream whirlwind, a surreal moment to end two years of an already extraordinary dream whirlwind. When we got off the stage, I was shocked. I don’t think I’ve ever been really shocked. I was crying, and Yulia was crying. I just wished Alexei was with us.

We go upstairs to get to this thing called “Winners Hallway”, something you really want to get into, that takes you to the press room. Ke Huy Quan Everything is everywhere at once He was walking toward us and I jumped into his arms to hug him. We were stunned and amazed.

I saw the two children who were created Bye Irish [which won the Oscar for Best Live-Action Short Film] We were all shocked. They’re 26, I’m 29 – I’m talking about imposter syndrome. Then I kiss Jamie Lee Curtis. If you’re there, you’ll spend an evening in this little club of people who’ve climbed the highest mountain – the movie Everest. You are blessed with pride and joy for one another.

When you were a kid in Toronto, was this your Mount Everest?

I don’t know, maybe if I was 15 or 16 when I came home from Etobicoke School of the Arts on the Underground, I’d think what it looked like, but I wasn’t a big fan of the Oscars, and I was never really drawn to the glitz and glamour. That’s not why I’m doing this job. It’s a coincidence that I ended up there. If you start making movies, especially documentaries, because you want to get to the top of the mountain, forget about it.

Do you have any sense when Alexei Navalny realizes victory?

I understand he already knows that, but I look forward to hearing his comments on that. I think he will be really excited.

Navalny is available to stream now on Crave.

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