Get involved: Send your news, views, pictures and video by texting SUPIC to 80360 or email us.
Kremlin calls Sussex film-maker Des Cox for documentary on Arctic Convoy
A film-maker has told how he was assigned a mission by the Kremlin to produce a documentary from Russians with Love.
Des Cox, 65, was cornered by the Russian ambassador at an event in London and asked if he would direct a film to show his country’s gratitude to the World War Two Arctic Convoy heroes.
Former USSR chiefs then paid for the Peacehaven man to take some 30 veterans to St Petersburg – called Leningrad in the Soviet era – where they received a hero’s welcome.
Mr Cox said: “It was fantastic. They put on a real showfor us. There was not a dry eye in the house.”
The incredible project came after Mr Cox produced a previous Arctic Convoy documentary in 2010.
Following a special screening at the House of Lords two years ago, he was approached by the Russian Ambassador.
Over the next few months he was in communication with officials in Moscow in an attempt to arrange filming and visas.
He said: “It was a nightmare to get anything done. They certainly still have that Cold War mentality, it’s all very secretive.
“Nothing goes down on paper either. All their business is done verbally. But when they say they will do something, they do it.”
Mr Cox set off with the veterans from Portsmouth where a number of Royal Navy ships provided a special escort for them out into the Channel.
He then spent the next few days in Russia with the veterans filming for the documentary.
He said: “Any request we had, no matter how small, had to be sent to Moscow for approval. You got the feeling that it was going pretty high up in the Kremlin, it was all quite strange.”
The main section of filming took place in St Petersburg which witnessed one of the key battles of the war.
“I was on tender hooks because I didn’t really know what to expect. But we were given a hero’s welcome, it was incredible.
“If it wasn’t for the supplies from the Arctic Convoy, the soldiers and people of Leningrad would have starved. All these years on and they haven’t forgotten.”
Mr Cox has now edited the film which has been made into an extended documentary.
Copies have been posted to Russian officials and he is in talks with broadcasters to secure its screening.
Hesaid: “Itwas great fun to make. The veterans are in their nineties and they aren’t going to be around forever. It’s important we get their stories on record now because nobody cared about the Arctic Convoys for many years.”
To order your copy visit snowbow.co.uk.
See the latest news headlines from The Argus:
- Falcon wins fight to the death with seagull
- Car left hanging over edge of 40 metre cliff
- Albion's city centre shop set to close
- Santa seafront run all for a good Claus
- Station seats sale just the ticket for Martlets
Comments are closed on this article.