The filming of a documentary featuring Star Team members commences
1 August 2023

A famous documentary filmmaker will show  the journey of the budding professionals through their own eyes.

In Yakutia, filming has begun for a documentary about the first season participants of the Star Team program. The film will chronicle the journey of Star Team students studying at US universities. They have pledged to use their education to benefit their homeland and people. The documentary is directed by Alexander Fedorov, the creator of the Bad Planet project.

The filmmakers aim to explore the children’s inner world as they embark on a journey that will likely take them away from Yakutia for the next four years. To document the children’s stories, the film crew set out on a long trip across the republic. Together with the children, they met famous Yakutians who may inspire the Star Team members. The director found it crucial to depict the children’s bond with their homeland, which they are leaving for a considerable time.

Valeria Nazarova talked about her native village of Charang, where her family and friends live. Valeria will be studying international relations at Boston University. To prepare for this challenging field, she discussed national identity issues with historian Ayatal Yakovlev.

Nikolai Petukhov aspires to be a film director. In the Amga ulus, known for its thriving film industry, he met renowned directors Dmitry Davydov and Yevgeny Nikolayev and actress Nina Ustinova. They discussed how a small Yakut village can produce films that win awards at international festivals.

Kerekuo Borisova plans to dedicate her life to environmental projects. It was crucial for her and the film crew to capture one of Yakutia’s main symbols, the famous Lena Pillars. Here, the children received an algys blessing and discussed the human-nature connection with the algyschit. Interestingly, major forest fires broke out during the filming, filling the sky with smoke.

Aina Romanova aims to become an illustrator and designer. In preparation for her upcoming studies, she met with distinguished Yakutian masters. She discussed contemporary painting with artist Teresa Pacheco-Chavez, while designer Sargylaana Barakhova-Ymyy shared insights about traditional patterns.

Maris Makarov will be studying in Canada, a country with a climate similar to Yakutia. He plans to create social and urban IT services. The film crew documented his perspective on how Yakutsk might have looked if it adopted Canadian urban planning practices.

Upcoming plans include filming in the United States and introducing new characters who, like the Star Team members, hail from distant locations and aim to aid their local communities through education. Director Alexander Fedorov intends to show how the contemporary education system fosters creativity and diverges from traditional methods. The documentarian believes that the filming process will help the youngsters to discover new aspects about themselves and the world.