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01/10/2015

THOSE WHO DARE

Those Who Dare, outlines the Baltic nations’ (Estonia, Latvia and Lithuania’s) struggle for the restoration of their independence, from 1986-1991, Gorbachev’s perestroika paving the way.

It recaptures the dramatic course of events in the Baltic capitals of Vilnius, Riga and Tallinn in January 1991 when the Soviet military attempted to brutally suppress the independence movements. At that moment, Jón Baldvin Hannibalsson, the minister of foreign affairs of Iceland, was the only western foreign minister to travel to the Baltic capitals to show his support, thus inscribing Iceland in golden letters in the minds of the Baltic people.

Hannibalsson’s personal connections and interest in the USSR were the driving force behind Iceland’s support for the freedom of the Baltic states.

From 1989 onwards, he, along with Danish Foreign Minister Uffe Elleman Jensen worked hard to support the Baltic nations’ struggle at the UN, in the European Council, within the Nordic Council, within NATO, at the North Atlantic Council meetings and elsewhere in the international arena. During this process, both Hannibalsson and Jensen understood that little interest was shown by their colleagues for this corner of the world, even thought they had been illegally annexed during the Second World War.
The superpowers had other interests, a war in Iraq, the unification of Germany – and did not see fit to rock Gorbachev’s boat.

In August 1991, following the coup d’etat in Moscow Iceland became the first country to recognize the Baltic countries. In December, The Soviet Union formally ceased to exist.

Featuring:
Jón Baldvin Hannibalsson, Iceland’s Minister of Foreign Affairs (1988-95)
Vytautas Landsbergis, Lithuania’s Head of Parliament (1990-92)
Dainis Ivans, Latvia’s leader of the Popular Front (1988-90)
Marju Lauristin, Estonia’s deputy speaker of Parliament (1990-91)
Sandra Kalniete, Latvia’s leader of the Popular Front (1988-91)
Uffe Ellemann-Jensen, Denmark’s Minister of Foreign Affairs (1982-93)
James Baker, USA’s Secretary of State (1989-92)
Lennart Meri, Estonia’s Minister of Foreign Affairs (1990-92)

Production company: Axfilms ehf, Vínlandsleið 14, 113 Reykjavík, Iceland
Contact: Ólafur Rögnvaldsson, olirogg@axfilms.is, mob: +354 699 3943
Co-producers: Kiur Aarma, Uldis Cekulis, Laura Almantaité, Kolfinna Baldvinsdóttir
Co-production companies: Traumfabrik, Vides Filmu Studija, Cultural & Media Consulting

Director/producer: Ólafur Rögnvaldsson
Script: Kolfinna Baldvinsdóttir
Editing: Madli Lääne, Ólafur Rögnvaldsson, Steinþór Birgisson, Martin Männik
Camera: Ólafur Rögnvaldsson, Ants-Martin Vahur, Uldis Cekulis, Þorfinnur Guðnason
Sound design: Horret Kuus
Music: Jakob Frímann Magnússon, Borgar Magnason

Film title: Those Who dare
Original title: Þeir sem þora
Country of origin: Iceland
Genre: Documentary
Sound: Stereo
Duration: 63/59/54 mín.
Format/aspect ratio: HD Video 16:9
Release: 2015