Kiev, Ukraine-He talked to two movie stars on a video call from the bombed and surrounded city of Kyiv.
His aide asked the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences for an Oscar night support show and re-released his television show on Netflix during the war.
Actor Volodymyr Zelensky, who became Ukraine’s wartime leader, has spent most of his public space to appeal to Western nations for deadly weapons to fight Russians, such as tanks, jets and missiles. Has been dedicated.
However, Zelensky, who appeared in romantic comedies before becoming president and was a stand-up comedy, called on celebrities and artists to represent his country. Superiority over Russia.
“We live in the modern world and know that the people who give their opinions and celebrities are important,” he says, currently involved in the Ukrainian government’s efforts to gain the support of artists, musicians and celebrities. Former Deputy Interior Minister Ekaterine Zuglaze said. Politicians are shaping the world. “
“Ukraine now has true solidarity around the world, not because of the tragic image of a destroyed city or human tragedy, but the values we all share. It is due to. “
However, Ukraine’s appeal to the academy, the organization that awards Oscars, is I met my own drama.
Before the show, the organizers said the war would be watched and human casualties would be respected, but did not promise to appear in a video by Zelensky, Los Angeles-based sitcom writer Brian Keith Eseridge said. Stated. With the help of Ukrainian actress Mila Kunis and her husband Ashton Kutcher, she went to the academy.
“The concern we were told was that they didn’t want to over-politicize the show,” Esseridge said. A huge platform just to show his face. “
Sean Penn, who was filming a documentary in Ukraine when the war broke out, He called on Oscar’s boycott if Zelensky wasn’t allowed to appear in the video, and vowed to smelt his own prize if the Academy kidnapped Ukrainian leaders. The award statue is made of gold-plated bronze.
If the Oscar producer did not allow the appearance of “Ukrainian leaders who have bullets and bombs for us and the Ukrainian children they are trying to protect”, I would be one of those people. Think of one person, and every bit, it will be the most obscene moment in Hollywood history in that decision. “
At a press conference on Thursday, the producer said he intends to commemorate the victims of the war, but did not promise to appear in a video by Zelensky.
“We are very much thinking about how to recognize where we are in the world,” Will Packer, the producer of the Oscar Awards Ceremony, said at a news conference.
Comedy actress Wanda Sykes, one of the co-sponsors of the ceremony, said of Zelensky, “I think he’s busy right now.”
Zelensky did not appear in the show. Kunis talked about the war when he appeared on television to showcase the performance of her song Reba McEntire from Kunis’ movie “Four Good Days.”
Before handing over the show to McEntire, Kunis said, “Many of us feel angry because of recent global events.”
“But when we witness the strength and dignity of those facing such devastation, it is impossible not to be impressed by their resilience,” Knis continued. .. “
The show also displayed three screens of golden text on a black background after McKentia’s performance, urging viewers to donate to humanitarian efforts.
“Movies are an important way to express our humanity in times of conflict, but in reality millions of Ukrainian families need food, medical care, clean water and emergency services,” the message said. read. You can do more — collectively and as a global community. “
Zelensky’s aides sought support in any way during the show and sought a way to gain public support in the West, but the value of celebrity support in the Gun Shoot War is widely acknowledged in Ukraine. Not done.
“Ultimately, what’s happening in the field is important,” said Oleksandr Danyluk, a former secretary of the National Security and Defense Council of Ukraine. It’s a difference. But it’s good that the person who started it wants to do it. Everyone wants to help in the best possible way. “
But Danylyuk said, “Ultimately we need results,” including the supply of fighters, tanks and missiles to the Ukrainian army.
Zelensky has put pressure on every aspect to reach a wide audience, especially those providing weapons, which is a moral imperative to support Ukraine in the war.
“In general, Zelensky is really following the news from Hollywood and looking for opportunities for support,” Serhiy Leshchenko, adviser to the President’s Chief of Staff, said in an interview.
Promoting support for Ukraine during the Oscar era is a week after Zelensky spoke with Katcher and Knis in a video call from Kyiv and thanked the Ukrainian refugees and the couple who raised $ 35 million for humanitarian aid. The GoFundMe campaign, which started earlier, said Reshchenko.
Kunis recently appeared in “Breaking News in Yuba County” and plans to release a movie on Netflix’s “Luckiest Girl Alive”.
“Ukrainians are proud and brave people who deserve our help when needed. This unjustified attack on Ukraine and humanity as a whole is devastating and the Ukrainians need our help. . “
After the video call, Zelensky’s aide searched for a last-minute time frame at the Oscar ceremony.
Zelensky has always had a keen image and a sense of storytelling in politics. Earlier this month, he said he knew that his repeated televised appeals for resistance and his continued presence in the impoverished capital turned him into a symbol of courage. .. Many countries.
Oscar also fits naturally into his government’s appeal for humanitarian assistance, as many of his top aides are also veterans in the film industry.
Presidential Secretary Andrie Jermac was a media lawyer and film producer, and Ivan Bakanov, head of domestic intelligence, was the director of Kvartal 95 Studios. A producer whose main credits are the hit romantic comedy movie “Eight First Dates” and the TV series “Zainlow”.
Prior to becoming President of Ukraine, Zelensky played the president in his own television series, Servant of the People, re-released on Netflix this month. After he made a tilade, the character, teacher is promoted to the president against corruption, which is filmed by his students in a video that becomes viral.
Maria Varenikova contributed the report from Kyiv and Matt Stevens contributed the report from New York.