Gosha Kutsenko played the role of Yunus-Bek Yevkurov in a new movie
This year marks 20th anniversary of the march to Pristina, when a battalion of Russian paratroopers arrived from Bosnia to Kosovo in a few hours, taking control of the Slatina airport (today it's called Pristina International Airport). NATO forces invasion was supposed to be carried out through this airport. The task to prevent this development was gived to Major Yunus-Bek Yevkurov, who was part of the international peacekeeping contingent in Bosnia and Herzegovina at that time. As part of a group of 18 soldiers of the GRU special division, he secretly entered Kosovo and Metohija, took control of the airport and prepared for the arrival of main forces of the Russian contingent...
“The Balkan Frontier” film is dedicated to these events. It will be released in a few days. Yevkurov is called Bek Ethoev in this movie, and he's played by Gosha Kutsenko, who also produced this film.
Kutsenko said that the idea of this movie came up in 2012 in a friendly conversation with future co-producer of the Balkan Frontier, Vasil Shevts: "We were sitting in a restaurant. We talked about our cinema, and he said that if he was me, he would film a serious movie about our country, about those events that I, as a resident of the USSR, remember, about those feelings that I remember. When the USSR collapsed, I was just a student of the film school, but I remember 1999 well. I was at Taganka, watched March bombings of Belgrade and suddenly felt lonely, felt devastated."
In this film, a group of Russian paratroopers is forced to participate in an unequal battle against terrorists. Russian peacekeepers and NATO forces are rushing to the airport. The world is once again close to a huge war. But the commander of the special forces, Andrei Shatalov, doesn't care about politics: his beloved Jasna is among hostages at the airport.
According to Gosha Kutsenko, there were obviously no women among real hostages. However, according to director's idea, character of a woman sniper was introduced.
Creators of this movie were personally consulted by Yunus-Bek Yevkurov, who today holds the post of head of Ingushetia. “We became friends, I flew to Ingushetia for some festival, we have friendly relations,” Kutsenko said. “Obviously, we can't know everything about secret operations. The word 'secrecy' exists for a reason. Yunus-Bek Yevkurov read our version of the script and when we got it back, it was full of his hand written notes. He wrote them while he was on trips, during breaks. We studied them, met with him, he told us what could have actually happened and what couldn't have happen at all. We explained: "It's a movie." He smiled, jokingly proposed several new ideas, and in the end we used them all."
Kutsenko admitted that he didn't try to achieve complete resemblance to prototype. “When we showed fragments of the movie, Yunus-Bek looked and said to me: “Thank God! My biggest fear was that you're going to put mustache on and speak with accent.” Then he said in a very serious tone: 'That's the first time someone plays me in a movie.' "It was a huge compliment for me," Kutsenko added.