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Pannonia Entertainment and Freeway Entertainment to release Gagarin: First in Space on 20 October

05 September 2016

Cinemas across Hungary to screen the epic race that saw the first man in the world to be launched into space and make history

Global rights management company Freeway Entertainment and European distributor Pannonia Entertainment are to partner on the theatrical release in Hungary of Gagarin: First in Space, about one of the momentous events in modern history, the journey of the first man into space.  

Directed by Pavel Parkhomenkio and written by Andrey Dmitriev and Oleg Kapanets, the film opens at the Puskin Cinema in Budapest on 20 October followed by a wide theatrical release across Hungary.

Gagarin: First In Space tells the true and epic story of the pioneering Russian cosmonaut Yuri Gagarin who made history in 1961 by orbiting Earth in Russia’s Vostok rocket, ensuring that Russia won the race with the USA to send the first man into space.   Funded by the Russian State, the 108-minute film symbolically matches exactly the same length of time of Gagarin’s legendary space voyage.   

Yaroslav Zhalnin stars as Gagarin, a flight obsessed young boy struggling in impoverished Russia, determined to become a fighter pilot, who then competes with thousands of rivals to win a place on the space programme and becomes one of 20 selected pilots whose bravery knew no bounds in their desire and ambition to conquer space. On 12 April 1961 Gagarin became one of modern history’s greatest pioneers as he rocketed into space not knowing what fate awaited him. On his return to Earth, Gagarin became an international hero, cheered in Red Square by a crowd of hundreds of thousands, he travelled the world and was and awarded many medals and titles. Tragically he was killed in 1968 test-piloting a training jet. When Apollo 11 touched down on the moon in July 1969, the crew left behind a commemorative medallion bearing Gagarin’s name.

Cecile Huberts, Freeway Entertainment Partner said: “Gagarin: First in Space is an awe-inspiring story of bravery, ambition and determination which will enthral audiences. Cinema has given us many great stories about space but this is the first feature film that reveals the first exciting but dangerous journey taken by man into space.  We are also delighted to be building our partnership with Pannonia Entertainment in releasing this film following our first co-venture with The Eichmann Show and then a special collection of Woody Allen classics. We look forward to working together to distribute more films in the future.”

Klaudia Elsässer, Founder and Managing Director of Pannonia Entertainment, said: “We are proud to be teaming up with Freeway Entertainment to release this visually stunning film that recreates one of the most exciting and timeless moment in world history to the Hungarian market.”

Based in the UK, Spain, Hungary and the Netherlands, Freeway Entertainment Group works with producers and entertainment companies in rights and revenue management and distribution worldwide across film, TV, video games, software and online.