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The Dimitriev Affair

Deep inside the Russian forests, against the wishes of the authorities, 60-year-old Yuri Dmitriev searches for mass graves from the era of Stalin’s terror against his own people - until one day he is arrested and sentenced to 15 years in a penal colony.

Following Yuri closely, the film paints a shocking picture of the way the Russian state rewrites history and treats its citizens.



Director: Jessica Gorter

Director of Photography: Sander Snoep
Additional Camera: Jessica Gorter, Sergei Markelov & Alexandra Ivanova
Sound Recordist: Mark Wessner
Editor: Katharina Wartena
Sound Design & Mix: Hugo Dijkstal
Colorist: John Terborg
Written by Jessica Gorter
Production & Research Russia: Oksana Maksimchuk
Line Producer: Elize Kerseboom
Director’s Advisor: Edlef Heeling
Commissioning Editor EODOCS: Margit Balogh
Producer: Frank van den Engel

Produced by Zeppers Film+TV in co-production with EODOCS


“Obligatory viewing (if you can bear it)”
Nick Holdsworth - Modern Times Review

“In ‘The Dmitriev Affair,’ Gulag Historian’s Persecution is a Microcosm of Putin’s Russia”
Samantha Berkhead - The Moscow Times

“In her down-to-earth, impressive documentary The Dmitriev Affair Gorter shows how Putin's repression is growing.”
Read the review of the Volkskrant. (in Dutch)

“A disturbing portrait of Russian historian and activist Yuri Dmitriev.”
Read the review of Trouw. (in Dutch)

“Yuri Dmitriev is an “archaeologist of terror.”
Read the NRC review in NRC. (in Dutch)

“A mind-boggling portrait of Russian activist Yuri Dmitriev”
Read the article of the Parool.(in Dutch)

"Impressive documentary"
Read the article by De Filmkrant. (in Dutch)

“The Dmitriev Affair: shocking, moving and impressive… …a monument to the honest loner in Putin's chaotic dictatorship where indictment, suspicion, abuse of power and terror call the shots.”
Laura Starink - Raam op Rusland/Window to Russia

“I understand if – with all that is coming at us from Ukraine – you have little appetite to see a documentary about a captured Russian. But do it anyway!
This is a fantastic film that very well exposes the mechanism that also allowed the Ukraine war to happen.” by Derek Sauer
Read his column in Parool. (in Dutch)

How to watch my films?

Some of the films are on Pay per View and others free to watch! 
Find the links in the filmography!