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Leader of Georgian March says he won’t allow screening of ‘And Then We Danced’ in Georgian cinemas

By Nika Gamtsemlidze
Tuesday, November 5
Sandro Bregadze, leader of the far-right, ultra-nationalistic group, Georgian March, says he will not allow the screening of Levan Akin's film ‘And Then We Danced’ in Tbilisi cinemas because it represents "propaganda of homosexuality."

As Bregadze noted, he does not know what he is going to do, but he is sure that he won’t allow the screening of the film.

"From what I've seen, this is a film made by an ordinary propaganda machine, by the way, it's a very bad film, and that's probably why it didn't win any decent awards,” noted the leader of Georgian March.

After his first threat on October 31, Bregadze held a special press conference on November 4, which was dedicated to his plans on disrupting the screening. At the press conference, he also addressed the Patriarchate of Georgia for assistance and called for their opinion on the matter.

According to Bregadze, the members Georgian March will be mobilized near the Amirani cinema on November 8, to “peacefully fight against the spread of gay propaganda.” As he noted, other “patriotic” organizations will also take part in the activity, and they will be placed near other cinemas.

The film will be screened in Georgian cinemas for only three days, November 8, 9 and 10. Tickets for the first screening are already sold out. The exact number of sold tickets is unknown.

Since the film crew is not attending the screening, the protest of Georgian March will be directed at the audience.

"As far as I know, there will be a lot of politicians from the National Movement, European Georgia, diplomatic corps, people close to the government and this protest will be directed at them," said Bregadze.

As the representatives of the Ministry of Internal Affairs, the police will act within the scope of the law to ensure the safety of people.

As the lead actors of the film, Levan Gelbakhiani and Bachi Valishvili noted, the story of two dancers in the film will lead to more empathy than aggression. According to them, other than the LGBTQI+ theme, the film also focuses on many important issues, which lead to the huge success of the film. As they said, the story is about freedom, love, today’s situation of Georgia and the most beautiful traditions of the culture.

The film was screened in the Directors' Fortnight section at the 2019 Cannes Film Festival and was also selected as the Swedish entry for the Best International Feature Film at the 92nd Academy Awards.

'And Then We Danced' has already won the Grand Prix, the Best Film and Best Actor Award at the 10th Odessa International Film Festival in July. In August, Levan Gelbakhiani won the Heart of Sarajevo Award for Best Actor at the 25th Sarajevo Film Festival and in October, the film won the Best Feature Film Award at the 2019 Iris Prize Festival.