ST. PETERSBURG, February 20 (RIA Novosti) - The Sun, a movie produced by famous Russian director Alexander Sokurov has won critical acclaim at the 55th Berlin Movie Festival. The festival concluded its work on Saturday.

"The Berlin Festival was very successful for us. We received a broad critical acclaim of the European audiences and introduced a number of Russian actors," Mr. Sokurov told RIA Novosti in a phone interview.

The director noted that The Sun became very popular among the audiences. "Many viewers attended every showing. I am grateful to all - in St. Petersburg, in Moscow and Berlin - who came to watch the movie and understood its meaning," Alexander Sokurov stated.

He said that during the festival he conducted a series of negotiations with distributors. "The issue of European distribution is sealed," Mr. Sokurov stressed.

"We made a very important movie, without intention to win during the festival. We solved a number of cinematography tasks that nobody else had dared to tackle before us. I am convinced that the movie will have a great future. We have accomplished the major goal," Mr. Sokurov concluded.

The Sun, dedicated to Japanese Emperor Hirohito, became the third chapter of film tetralogy depicting great (and not only in a positive sense of the word) authoritarian figures of the past century. We met Hitler in "Moloch" at the onset of a collapse of his individuality. We saw Lenin in "Taurus", strong, violent, not willing to surrender to death, in love with power.

The events portrayed in the new movie bring the viewers back to 1945, when the American troops landed on the territory of Japan agonizing from the outcome of nuclear bombing of Hiroshima and Nagasaki. The main characters of the movie are Japanese Emperor Hirohito, who, by agreeing to capitulate, preferred the saving of human lives to the idea of national pride, and the commander of the US occupational forces General MacArthur.

The movie produced by the Russian director participated in the Berlin Festival for the first time in the last five years. Its budget was $2.5 million. Forty-five percent of financing was allocated by the Russian Federal Agency for Culture and Cinematography.

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