Washington, D.C. Premiere Imagine 2,000 oil rigs, 300 kilometers of bridges, rusty Soviet-era trucks rolling back and forth, nine-story building blocks, a huge canteen, thousands of oil workers, a towering cultural palace, a lemonade factory and a green park…all nestled in a city in the middle of the Caspian Sea. Commissioned by Stalin in 1949, Oil Rocks is the first and largest offshore oil city ever built. Despite two-thirds of its infrastructure having been reclaimed by the sea, the city still stands as a vast, sprawling island of oil platforms. For the first time in its 60-year history, a Western film crew has been granted access to document the city in its entirety. Oil Rocks – City Above the Sea recounts the experience of this crew capturing a real ‘Oil Atlantis.’ Combining black-and-white archival film from the Soviet era along with contemporary footage, the film tells the story of this timeless place and of some of its amazing inhabitants. Directed by Marc Wolfensberger. Produced by Intermezzo Films and Thin Line Productions.
Embassy of Switzerland screening only: Introduced by Norbert Bärlocher, Counselor, Head of Communications and Cultural Affairs, Embassy of Switzerland. Discussion with filmmaker Marc Wolfensberger follows screening. Presentation of the Polly Krakora Award by Peter O’Brien, Executive Director, Environmental Film Festival in the Nation’s Capital.
Carnegie Institution for Science screening: Welcome by Flo Stone, President and Founder, Environmental Film Festival in the Nation’s Capital.