Red Zone

Film phase:Development


Red Zone is a dangerous area in the frontline zone where hostilities take place. But in some other sense, it is also a space of insecurity for people who live in a shadow of an every-minute threat. And moreover, it is a zone of borderline sensations.

What does it mean to be a woman in the war times? Ukrainian film director and writer Iryna Tsilyk offer to look at this issue from her personal point of view in the form of the animated film essay, an intimate film diary.

Red Zone is a 2022 Critical Issues Fund grantee.



Iryna Tsilyk looking directly at the camera. Black and white portrait.

Iryna Tsilyk (she/her) is a Ukrainian filmmaker, writer, and screenwriter. Notably, she directed the feature-length documentary film The Earth Is Blue As an Orange which won the Directing Award: World Cinema Documentary at Sundance Film Festival 2020, as well as numerous other honors. The film was selected for the Berlinale film festival (Generation 14+), IDFA’s “Best of Fest”, MoMA Doc Fortnight, CPH:DOX, Hot Docs, and more than 100 other International film festivals.

Previously, Tsilyk has directed several short documentaries and fiction films. Her feature-length debut fiction film Rock. Paper. Grenade premiered at Warsaw FF’22. Now she is working on two new projects: the fiction My Ninth Life and the documentary Red Zone. Tsilyk is also the author of eight books published in Ukraine (poetry, prose, and children’s books).



Darya Bassel looking directly at camera. She has shoulder length, wavy hair. Black and white portrait.

In 2011, Darya Bassel (she/her) joined the team of Docudays UA International Human Rights Documentary Film Festival in Kyiv where she still works as a programmer and head of industry. Parallel to her work at the festival, she also works in film production. The first film she worked as associate producer and a festival agent was My Father is my Mother’s Brother, directed by Vadym Ilkov, which was coined the most innovative film in the International Competition at the 2018 Visions du Réel Awards. In 2019, she and Vika Khomenko launched the film production company Moon Man. The company focuses on creative documentary and fiction films with a strong authorial director’s approach. In 2022, Moon Man’s first production, the documentary Outside, had its world premiere at CPH:DOX. Darya was also co-producer of the award-winning documentary A House Made of Splinters, directed by Simon Lereng Wilmont. She has served on juries at numerous festivals, including IDFA, Visions du Réel, Krakow IFF, and One World. She was also invited by the Ukrainian film production company, TABOR, to co-produce Maksym Nakonechnyi’s debut feature, Butterfly Vision, which premiered in Cannes 2022, in the Un Certain Regard.