Openscreen Doc & Talk: Occupation or Liberation

On 1 June 2022, Openscreen will present the documentary ‘Occupation or Liberation’, which explores the historical events that took place at the end of World War II in Bulgaria, when the Red Army occupied the country. The film is created by Bulgarian historian, Professor Evelina Kelbecheva, and filmmaker Svetoslav Ovcharov.

The event on 1 June is part of Openscreen’s series Doc & Talk. It is organised in partnership with the Consultative Commission on Integration and the Commission on Social Cohesion of the Commune of Bettembourg, as well as with Ciné Le Paris in Bettembourg, where it will take place. The screening of ‘Occupation or Liberation’ is scheduled for 19:30 h. The length of the documentary is one hour.

After the movie, there will be a discussion. One of the film’s creators, Professor Evelina Kelbecheva comes to Luxembourg especially for the event. Joining our discussion is Professor Machteld Venken from the University of Luxembourg, an expert in Eastern Europe’s history. The political journalist from Lëtzebuerger Land, Luc Laboulle will moderate the discussion.

The movie has English subtitles and the conversation after the screening will also be led in English but there will be a simultaneous translation in French during the discussion as well as a short summary of the key points in the film. Thus, everyone who wants to attend will be welcomed and included.

‘Occupation or Liberation’ is based on documents from the archives that have never been shown before. There is nothing fictional in the film, neither is there any acting. For the sake of objectivity, there is no commentary or analysis. This allows the viewer to focus on the names and numbers from the true events between 1944 and 1947 that shaped the following years in post-war Bulgaria, occupied by the Red Army. The representation of historical reality in that era was heavily influenced by Soviet propaganda.

This documentary continues the line that Openscreen has started with the film “The Kingmaker”, which features the controversial story of Filipino politician Imelda Marcos – a story about abuse of power, lies and propaganda. The same elements can be found in “Occupation or Liberation”.

The film of Evelina Kelbecheva and Svetoslav Ovcharov has already won two national and one international film awards. Soon after Openscreen’s Doc & Talk, ‘Occupation or Liberation’ will be shown at the European Parliament.

It is time to review history and rethink Europe without borders. What can we learn from the past in order not to allow the same injustice happening in the future? How can the misrepresentation of facts change the course of history and people’s lives? How to oppose propaganda, which somehow is as present today as it was eighty years ago? Let’s start a conversation on 1 June.

The access to the event is free. Register at

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