Los Angeles, CA -- (ReleaseWire) -- 06/18/2014 -- In February, during the darkest days of the massive uprising in Ukraine, a 24-year-old graduate student, Yulia Marushevska, awakened the world to her countrys revolution with the courageous and powerful YouTube video, “I Am a Ukrainian.” (http://bit.ly/M6znXw)
In one week, 3 million people in 230 countries had viewed it; in 14 days, 7 million people watched it. Her quavering, straight-from-the-soul speech and mesmerizing presence shook people around the world into awareness of the struggle taking place.
Now, Ben Moses, the LA-based producer/director who helped her post her video on YouTube, has started production on a long-form documentary about the Ukrainian revolution as seen through Yulia's eyes.
Literally overnight Yulia went from unknown, ordinary Ukrainian to global celebrity, overwhelmed with demands from the international press. Charismatic and brilliant on camera and off, she quickly became the de facto spokesperson to the world for the revolution, sought after by every major network around the world, plus programs like PBS's “Charlie Rose” and scores of print and radio press outlets from five continents.
High praise for her poured out from everywhere. So did vicious and scathing attacks.
Who is this young woman? Why did she make the video? Will she and her revolutionary friends create a true democracy in Ukraine, or are they indeed fascists and neo-Nazi thugs as claimed by Russian media?
This once unknown, ordinary college student has become welcome at the highest levels of government in Europe and America; and now is determined to take full advantage of her fame for her country's future.
She is on a mission to coax, cajole, pressure or entice in any way possible America and Europe – and the world – to help her country's fledgling democracy resist what she sees as the ominous clutches of Vladimir Putin's Russia.
Few can resist her. On a speaking tour of the U.S. and Canada in April, she met in New York with former Georgian president Mikhiel Saakashvili, had meetings with Senator Marco Rubio and other politicians in Washington and members of parliament in Canada. She has been invited to spend the summer doing post-graduate work at Harvard.
Today she has invitations from the highest levels of politics, culture and society around the world and offers from Ukraine's new leaders to help reform the government.
As her country battles to free itself from Russian political dominion, Yulia struggles with her own transformation from quiet anonymity to woman of the world - pursued by the press and threatened by shadowy detractors.
The film will follow what happens to her and her revolution, through the lens of how myth and historical tradition affects a culture's attitudes toward other people and other cultures. The traditional Russian view of Ukraine is that of an eternal appendage to the greater nation to the east. The traditional Ukrainian view is of having been oppressed by the huge eastern ?bear? for far too long.
Will this young woman succeed at helping create a stable democracy in her new government? How will all of this affect her relationship with her family? (Her grandparents in eastern Ukraine are convinced she's an American spy.)
Will she become her country's Joan of Arc, leading her people to battle against the enormous power to the east, or will by next year she be a refugee from Putin's “New Ukraine,” in fear for her life for having spoken out?
The production team was filming in Kiev in the early days of the revolution, and since March has been traveling and filming with Yulia as she toured Canada and the U.S. speaking and voted in her country's presidential election on May 25th. Initial funding came from early donors and investors, Richard Branson and Virgin Airways.
Moses hopes the Kickstarter campaign will reach the more than eight million people who viewed Yulia's YouTube video and prompt many to support the documentary.
Ben Moses is available for interviews.
“I Am a Ukrainian”
The Official I Am a Ukrainian Movie Kickstarter Project - http://kck.st/1smpLey