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CNN’s Alexey Navalny Documentary Lands Fathom Screenings Following Russian Dissident’s Conviction

Mere weeks after Russian opposition leader Alexey Navalny's conviction and sentencing, the Sundance prize winner will play in 800 theaters this April.



Warner Bros.

Warner Bros. has officially acquired Sundance breakout documentary “Navalny” for theatrical release and set a special Fathom screening event only in theaters.

CNN Films, Warner Bros., and HBO Max have partnered with Fathom Events to present director Daniel Roher’s documentary thriller “Navalny” in special screening events April 11 and 12 across over 800 theaters in North America. The screenings will be followed by a conversation with the filmmakers, moderated by CNN’s chief international correspondent Clarissa Ward.

“Navalny” centers on the untold story of Russian dissident and presidential candidate Alexey Navalny, who was the target of a 2020 assassination attempt, allegedly ordered by President Vladimir Putin. On March 22, Navalny was sentenced to nine years in a maximum-security prison after he was convicted of fraud and contempt of the Russian court. Kremlin critics see the sentencing as an attempt to keep Putin’s primary rival behind bars for as long as possible.

“Navalny” premiered at 2022 Sundance, where it won both the Audience Award in the U.S. Documentary competition and the Festival Favorite Award. It currently sits at 100 percent on Rotten Tomatoes.

“Alexey Navalny was just last week convicted and sentenced in Russia and cannot tell the story of what happened to him,” director Roher said in a press statement. “Our film shows his tremendous courage fighting an authoritarian regime and its corruption inside Russia. I’m looking forward to the Fathom Events engagements and speaking to CNN’s Clarissa Ward.  I appreciate Warner Bros. Pictures creating these experiences for theatrical audiences.”

“Navalny” follows the investigation into the shocking and brazen assassination attempt against Russian opposition leader Navalny. Through his years-long campaign against corruption among Russia’s elites, Navalny developed powerful enemies. His publicized revelations, and calls for democratic reforms, enraged Putin, who refuses to even say his name in public. In August 2020, Navalny was secretly poisoned with a military-grade chemical nerve agent in an elaborate attempt on his life. Despite denials from the Russian government, the poison was later linked to the Kremlin through investigations by international news organizations, including Bellingcat and CNN.

“Navalny” is produced by Odessa Rae of RaeFilm Studios, Diane Becker and Melanie Miller of Fishbowl Films, and Shane Boris of Cottage M. Amy Entelis and Courtney Sexton of CNN Films, and Maria Pevchikh, are executive producers of the documentary.

“With ‘Navalny,’ we had an exceptionally rare opportunity to drop audiences into the center of a heart-pounding, edge-of-your-seat thriller that is not only true but urgently unfolding, in real-time, at this critical moment in history,” Jeff Goldstein, president of domestic distribution at Warner Bros. Pictures said. “Daniel Roher and his team have seamlessly combined daredevil reporting with masterful filmmaking to deliver a compelling motion picture that demands to be seen by a broad movie-going audience, and we couldn’t be more thrilled to work with our partners at CNN Films, HBO Max, and Fathom Events to make that happen.”

Ray Nutt, CEO of Fathom Events, added, “Fathom Events is beyond proud to bring this must-see documentary to theaters at a time when Navalny’s story should be in front of everyone. We’re honored to partner with CNN Films, Warner Bros. Pictures, and exhibition to also present the exclusive discussion with Clarissa Ward and the filmmakers about this incredible story.”

CNN Films retains linear broadcast rights for “Navalny” in North America. HBO Max and CNN+ hold streaming rights. Dogwoof represents available international rights for the film.

Tickets for the “Navalny” theatrical event may be purchased at FathomEvents.com, or through participating theater box offices.

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