The Euromaidan protests began as Ukrainians peacefully took to the streets in favor of closer association with the European Union, a movement which has now escalated into a globally recognized movement against a defunct system of government in Ukraine and state violence against its own people. Two American students, Adriana Krasniansky and Julian Hayda, were some of the first diaspora members to live inside and report from the Maidan. Working for the Euromaidan Journalist Collective, Krasniansky and Hayda established a grassroots news initiative that captured the opinions, hopes, and fears of students, politicians, celebrities, and senior citizens protesting in Kyiv. This feature film documents the beginnings of the Euromaidan from the perspective of young American students caught in the midst of a movement for democracy, far from the comforts, rights, and complacency of the West.
The Euromaidan Journalist Collective, which was founded by five American students from various fields in order to quickly, accurately, and creatively relay the events transpiring in Ukraine to an English-speaking audience, is producing a feature-length documentary film under the working title of The Last Revolution: Ukraine's Euromaidan as part of its mission.
Current members of the EJC include:
- Julian Hayda, DePaul University
- Adriana Krasniansky, Fordham University
- Margaryta Kulichova, Taras Shevchenko National University
- Michael Fedynsky, University of Notre Dame
- Seamus Kelleher, The Ohio State University
- Zoe Ripecky, Vassar College
- Mykola Murskyj, Perimeter Institute and Massachusetts Institute of Technology
The Euromaidan movement is the world’s latest “Twitter Revolution.” Social and digital media have played important roles in spreading information and organizing protesters. We hope that those who strive for Western democratic values in Ukraine can see this film, whether displayed on a hijacked jumbotron in Kyiv's city square or streamed onto a mobile device, and view it as a symbol of their movement's effectiveness, showing them that their voices are heard in the West. We also hope that this film can inspire pro-democracy activists in other countries who hope to emulate Ukraine’s movement for change in their own countries.
The protesters in Ukraine are facing three key issues our film plans to address:
Human rights violations on the part of Ukraine's government.
A society's struggle with kleptocracy and oligarchy.
Violence and manipulation used against pro-democratic protesters.
Our film is currently in production, with certain aspects of post-production already in progress such as transcription and translation of interviews filmed in December 2013, preliminary editing, and writing voiceover for a temp track. We are still in production due to the ongoing nature of the protests, wherein our crew plans to travel back to Ukraine in March of 2014 for follow-up interviews and long-form interviews of protest and government leaders, and the collection of raw b-roll material from photographers who have been on the ground since the protest's beginning. We hope to complete our film by fall of 2014.Your support would help defray the cost of a follow-up trip to Ukraine with high-quality crew and equipment in March of 2014, and contribute immensely to licensing the use of already-recorded material for use in our film. Much of the funds would also be applied to hire an editor with much experience working with feature documentaries, and would cover the costs of equipment, backing up, storing, copying, and distributing footage. As part of The Euromaidan Journalist Collective's mission to educate the public regarding Ukraine's revolution, the Fledgling Fund's support would also allow the film's crew to tour with the film and raise awareness for the human rights issues today's Ukrainians face.