Who's Afraid of Julia Kristeva?

1966. Bulgaria is still behind the Iron Curtain. Julia Kristeva - a young and smart student - goes to Paris on a scholarship from the French government. There she falls among the cream of French intelligentsia, where she meets the leader of the movement Tel Quel – Philippe Sollers. The two instantly fall in love and marry. France welcomes young Bulgarians ideas influenced by Russian structuralists and formalists with open arms. She begins to work with Claude Lévi-Strauss, Jacques Derrida, Lucien Goldmann, Roland Barthes and Jacques Lacan.
Iskra Angelova’s film Who's Afraid of Julia Kristeva? tells the story of one of the most successful and controversial world famous French-Bulgarian intellectuals – psychoanalyst, linguist, semiotician and philosopher, Julia Kristeva is a scientist, writer and feminist, but mostly – her interesting, unusual and beautiful mind amazes today.

  • Iskra Angelova
  • Iskra Angelova
  • Iskra Angelova
  • Julia Kristeva
    Key Cast
  • Project Title (Original Language):
    Кой се страхува от Юлия Кръстева?
  • Project Type:
  • Runtime:
    1 hour 23 minutes 50 seconds
  • Completion Date:
    November 15, 2016
  • Production Budget:
    25,000 USD
  • Country of Origin:
  • Country of Filming:
    Bulgaria, France
  • Language:
    Bulgarian, English, French
  • Shooting Format:
    HDCAM 1920x1080p
  • Aspect Ratio:
  • Film Color:
    Black & White and Color
  • First-time Filmmaker:
  • Student Project:
  • First screening - national premiere
    April 20, 2017
    National Premiere
Distribution Information
  • Iskra Angelova
    Country: Bulgaria
    Rights: All Rights
Director Biography - Iskra Angelova

Iskra Angelova is a well-known Bulgarian TV show host, journalist, writer and actress. She is a Fulbright scholar. She is a cofounder of The Ayn Rand society in Bulgaria.
Iskra Angelova is a diplomaed journalist (MA in Broadcast Journalism, Emerson, Boston, USA), actress (BA in acting from the National Theatre and Film Academy, Sofia, BG) and Bulgarian philologist (MA in Bulgarian Philology, Sofia University, Sofia, BG).
She went to get her second MA in Broadcast Journalism in 1997 on a Fulbright scholarship in Boston, USA, and ended working full time as an associate producer for the CBS TV morning show The Early Show, based in NYC.
When she returned to Bulgaria, Iskra hosted National bTV’s morning show This Morning /”Tази сутрин”/, produced and hosted National Nova TV’s Saturday and Sunday morning show At Home /”У нас”/ and since 2005 is the author and host of the Bulgarian National Television cultural Sunday night talk show Night Birds /”Нощни птици”/. She invites most significant and interesting public figures and artists, and the show became a brand with its intelligent, easy and sophisticated style.
As an actress Iskra Angelova appeared in several films and theatre performances such as Rondo /”Хоровод”/, Closer /”По-близо”/, The Monogamist /”Моногамният”/, Beautiful Bodies /”Красиви тела”/, Class /”Клас”/, The Revolver /“Револверът“/, The Seagull etc. in Sofia and Boston.

In addition to this, Iskra Angelova writes for newspapers and magazines, her novel Do I Love You? /“Обичам ли те?“/ was a bestseller in the Summer of 2007.
Since 2008 Iskra writes and shoots prime time documentary series for Bulgarian National TV. Her films Bread and Chocolate /”Хляб и шоколад”/ about Mexican writer – the mother of Magical realism – Laura Esquivel and Imagination is my Suitcase /”Въображението е моят куфар”/ about Turkish bestselling writer Elif Shafak were among top rated programs, aired on Bulgarian National TV.

Iskra Angelova
Wonderland Productions and Bulgarian National TV
+359 888 435 152

Add Director Biography
Director Statement

Dear friends and colleagues,

I was 17 years old when I first heard about Julia Kristeva and since then I wanted to understand what predetermines her mysterious and spectacular life-trip. I was studding simultaneously literature at Sofia University and acting at the National Theatre and Film Academy in Sofia, Bulgaria. In my mind she achieved all we all wanted, dreamed and desired to achieve back then. Later I got my MA in Broadcast Journalism from Emerson in Boston, worked for CBS in New York and for all 3 National TV channels in Bulgaria, for 10 years now I produce and host my weekly cultural talk-show on Bulgarian National TV “Night birds” (Noshtni ptici), interviewed and met many celebrities and intellectuals (last great interview I had was with favorite Sergio Castellitto and his wonderful wife Margaret Mazzantini - http://imedia.bnt.bg/predavanyia/noshni-ptici/noshtni-ptitsi-18-dekemvri-2015) , and achieved a lot myself. But I will always remember the astonishment I felt about her – our Julia!

She escaped the regime and went to become a free thinker in a chaotic and revolutionary France of 1968. She was a woman from the Eastern European block, but she succeeded to cross all borders, to pass through the Iron Curtain and to establish her name as a serious scholar in semiotics, linguistics, psychoanalysis and literature through a language which even wasn’t her mother’s tongue. She fell in love with the lieder and became part of the most intellectual movement back then in Paris – Tel Quel. There she met and worked with Roland Barthes, Michel Foucault, Jacques Derrida, Tzvetan Todorov, Claude Levi-Strauss, Jacques Lacan and Lucien Goldmann. Since then Kristeva has become an internationally acknowledged and controversial scholar, along with Umberto Eco was a professor at Columbia University in New York and is considered “The last public intellectual”.

What always has amazed me was that she became a star not because of her looks, her nationality, her husband, her important relatives or her natural gifts, but because of her ability to think, to change perspectives, to analyze – because of her beautiful mind.

It took me 2 years and a lot of efforts to convince people and institutions in Bulgaria that I should make this film. It is done almost without any budget, but with all devotion, professionalism and affection Ms. Kristeva deserves. She showed me her Paris, invited me to her home and let me meet and film her followers, students, friends and family. She opened the door to this Wonderland for me. I entered. And I saw that there were no cruel and powerful Red Queens, running important Rabbits or mysterious Caterpillars who run the game of success and achievement. There, in her kingdom, was again herself – alone with her thoughts and her ability to overthink and invent anew the world, her place in it and her role in the big play of life.

Iskra Angelova

+359 888 435 152