Daunting mission of being king
The third instalment of the documentary series dedicated to the Bulgarian royal family has been released
7 October, 2017
H.R.H. Princess Maria Louisa.
Photo: Alena Antonova
The King, the third film in the documentary series about the Bulgarian royal family and its role in the development and modernisation of the latest iteration of the Bulgarian state, was released on DVD on the eve of the 80th birthday of H.M. King Simeon II.
The series, a co-production of the La joie des horizons and the Valois Monarchique associations, was scripted and authored by historian Malvina Gospodinova.
The picture is dedicated to the 80th birthday of H.M. Simeon II, King of Bulgarians, and the 130th anniversary of the Third Bulgarian Kingdom’s royal dynasty, celebrated in July.
The two-part documentary project The King follows the life of the Bulgarian monarch through the 50 years of his exile, a period the Bulgarian public is largely unfamiliar with, and his return to the country. The film includes numerous documents, photos and archive footage, most of which are courtesy of the royal family’s personal archive and are being shown for the first time ever. The frank interviews with H.M. King Simeon II, taken in the Vrana and Tsarska Bistritsa palaces, and the royal family’s home in Madrid, introduce the audience to little-known facts from the life of the Bulgarian royalty. The memories and reflections shared by the king shed light on the events from the Cold War period and Bulgaria’s transition to democracy as well as today’s geopolitical situation.
The film was shot in Bulgaria, Spain, France and the US. In addition to their majesties King Simeon II and Queen Margarita, the production features memories and opinions shared by His Holiness Neophyte, Patriarch of Bulgaria; Prof. Ognyan Gerdzhikov, former speaker of the National Assembly (2001-2005) and interim PM (2017); H.E. Camillo Zuccoli, ambassador of the Sovereign Order of Malta to Sofia; the esteemed French journalist and TV host Stephane Bern; Attorney Asen Oshanov, a long-time associate of his excellency, as well as former member of parliament Stoyan Raychevski and Iliya Lingorski, former vice-minister of finance.
Special appearances in the film make HRH Maria Louisa, Princess of Bulgaria, Princess of Kohary, and HRH Prince Henri d'Orleans, Count of Paris, Duke of France, pretender to the French crown as Henry VII.
The creative team behind the film features representatives from Bulgaria, France, Belgium and Spain – Alena Antonova (editor), Noel Hanegreefs (interpreter), Bernard Salle (French host), Dolores Alvarado (director of photography), Amanda Sanchez (film editing), Andre Pele (director of photography).
The first episode in the documentary series about the royal family, Princess Clementine – the Aristocratic Benefactor of Bulgaria, was shot in 2015 and premiered in the city of princes – Chantilly, France. The second film, entitled The Monarch, was dedicated to King Ferdinand I and was shot in 2016 in Bulgaria and France. Its Bulgarian premiere was held at the Vrana Palace, while the French audience got its first glimpse of it this past March.