Dancing Bears

a feature film, in development
Original Title Tancujúce Medvede
Czech Republic, Slovakia, Poland, Bulgaria

Screenplay Peter Kerekes
Director  Peter Kerekes
Cinematography Martin Kollar
Producer Nina Numankadić – Marina Films
Co-producers Peter Kerekes (SK), Stanisław Zaborowski – Silver Frame (PL), Martichka Bozhilova – AGITPROP (BG)

For centuries, Bulgaria was home to bear handlers who would travel the country with trained bears and entertain the local people. After Bulgaria joined the EU, the practice was outlawed, and the bears were transported to a reservation, where they live in catered conditions designed to simulate freedom. This film is conceived as a tragic comedy showing how the bears and their former handlers have adapted to their newfound freedom.


Dancing Bears is a feature film that takes place at the beginning of the millennium in Bulgaria and it is based on true stories of Bulgarian bear-leaders, who are depicted in a book of reportages called Dancing Bears written by Polish author Witold Szablowski.