Kirill Serebrennikov, the prominent Russian film and theater director, had his widely convicted fraud sentence commuted and later left the country.
On Monday, a Moscow court decided to overturn the three-year prison sentence and expunge his criminal record after half of the sentence passed without any parole violations, according to local reports. His travel ban was also lifted.
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A photo of Serebrennikov sporting a “I turn off the TV” t-shirt was then posted on social media on Tuesday, allegedly showing that he had arrived in France after leaving Russia.
Sources from Deadline have confirmed that he is now in Germany where he is working on film and theater projects. He is unlikely to return to Russia anytime soon, although the decision is not set in stone for good.
Last year, Serebrennikov was unable to attend the Cannes premiere of his film Petrov flu due to the travel ban. Deadline spoke with the filmmaker ahead of the premiere to discuss his legal issues.
The charges stemmed from Serebrennikov’s role as artistic director of the Gogol Center in Moscow, which he turned into a leading cultural center. It was claimed that he and four other defendants embezzled a large sum of funds, which was denied by the director. The charges were widely condemned by international human rights and film organizations, but a Moscow court found him guilty nonetheless, handing him a suspended sentence, meaning he has at least avoided jail.
Serebrennikov, whose credits also include The student and Letohas several projects in various stages of production, including Tchaikovsky’s wife who could go to Cannes this year.
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