About the studio

Documentary Film Production Studio " YastrebFilm " was founded in 2009 by Sergey Yastrzhembskiy , formerly well known politician, diplomat and journalist. Studio’s first project was a series of films about Africa, entitled "Beyond the Passage of Time” which speaks of endangered cultures of the Black Continent. Three years after the filming geography started to expand. Siberia, Southeast Asia, Oceania and Latin America added the African destination.

Today, "Yastrebfilm" studio’s collection has 64 documentaries. Almost all the films were shown on TV channels "Russia -2" and “My Planet" in the author's program "Magic of adventure".

In 2013 the Italian publishing house “SKIRA" released an album of Sergey Yastrzhembskiy: Patriarchal Africa. The Last Sunrise. Photo-Chronicle of the Vanishing Life (SKIRA. Milano, 2013).

In 2014 the Russian publishing house "Children's Literature" released a book of story tales "Descendants of the Pale Fox. Tales of the peoples of Africa" based on the vanishing legends and stories of the African tribes, collected during numerous expeditions.

In 2016 the Yastrebfilm studio released Ivory. A crime story, a hard-hitting investigative documentary revealing the massacres of elephants in the wild, filmed for 3 years in 30 countries with over 250 hours of raw material. 

At the end of 2016, the Yastrebfilm studio released a new investigative documentary about the main threats to the Amur tiger's survival TIGERS AND HUMANS, filmed with the support of the Amur Tiger Center. It was premiered at the Moscow International Film Festival in June 2017.

Recently Yastrebfilm released several projects, including a documentary film about Asian Elephants “From God to Paper: The life of an Asian Elephant”, and a documentary about the problem of mammoth tusk exploitation “Passions for the Mammoth”.

At the moment the studio works on the film about the Shaman practices all over the world, and a full-length film "Shot of Hope" about the conservation role of Trophy Hunting.



In 2010 the first film in “Beyond the Passage of Time” series, entitled “The Last Chevaliers of the Desert”, was shown in the Thematic Programming at International documentary Festival in Agadir, Morocco.

In June 2010 “A Stone-Age Kalashnikov” was shown as part of the Moscow International Film Festival and received high critical acclaim.

In September 2010, the film "Sacred Fire of the Himba. Realm of women" was shown at the 5th Conference of Visual Anthropology "Mediating Camera" in Moscow, Russia.

In January 2011 the film “Sacred Fire of the Himba” was shortlisted to compete for Best Documentary Film at the Golden Eagle Award (Russia).

In August 2011 the full-length documentary film “Africa. Blood and Beauty” was shortlisted to compete for Best World Documentary Film at the Festival of World Films in Montreal, Canada.

In 2011 the Russian cable channel “My Planet” awarded Sergey Yastrzhembskiy in the nomination “Discovery of Africa” for the “Magic of Adventure” show based on Beyond the Passage of Time, a documentary series shot in Africa.

In November 2011 "Africa. Blood and Beauty" was selected to participate in the 19th Annual African Diaspora International Film Festival held in New York City (USA).

In December 2011 the film “Descendants of the Pale Fox” was awarded the National Laurels Prize for Best Enlightening Film of the Artdocfest-2011 Film Festival held in Russia.

In January 2012 “Africa: Blood & Beauty” was shown in some cinemas of Paris.

In June 2012 "Africa: Blood & Beauty" had a Russian Premiere on the 34th Moscow International Film Festival in the program “Free Thought”.
“Africa: Blood & Beauty” took part in the “People’s planet” festival of documentary films held in Moscow from 19-22 July 2012, dedicated to the people of Earth.
"Africa. Blood and Beauty" took part in competition in the category “Documentary Feature” at the New York City International Film Festival from August 9 to 16, 2012 under the "Russian Night".

In September 2012 “Purifying by the Sun” was shown at the Festival del Viaggio (Florence, Italy).

In November 2012 the documentary film “The Reindeer people” (general producer S.Yastrzhembskiy, director O.Vershinina) won the 5th International Festival of Visual Anthropology “Aspects” in Torun, Poland.

In December 2012 the film “Possessed by Voodoo” was shown on the Documentary Festival ARTDOCFEST (Moscow,Russia) in the category “TV BOX”.

In December 2012 on the 18th International Human Rights Documentary Film Festival “Stalker” (Moscow, Russia) “Africa: Blood & Beauty” won a Special Prize from the Russian Union of Journalists.“The Reindeer People” was shortlisted by the American Documentary Film Festival and Film Fund (AmDocs) in Los Angeles in April 4-8, 2013.

“Africa: Blood & Beauty” won the Audience Award at the 8th Open Russian Anthropological Film Festival in Ekaterinburg, held in April 15th- 20th, 2013.

In December 2013 “Old man Stepan, Martian and Mamelfa… or Russian old believers in Bolivia” took part in the Russian festival of author’s documentary films “ARTDOCFEST-2013” in the nomination “TV BOX”.

In January 29, 2014 “Africa. Blood and Beauty” won the award for “Best non-fiction film” at the 12th annual Awards ceremony of the National Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences of Russia for achievements in the field of Russian cinema and television "Golden Eagle".

In May 2014 "Old man Stepan, Martian, and Mamelfa… or Russian old believers in Bolivia" was awarded a special prize of the 23rd Festival of spiritual and moral films – "Golden Knight" in Tomsk (Russia) – a statuette of the "Golden Knight" in the category "Best short-length documentary film".

In June 2014 "Go and Come back a Winner!" speaking of the ancient festival Palio in Siena was shown at Moscow International Film Festival. 

In August 2014 "Old man Stepan, Martian, and Mamelfa… or Russian old believers in Bolivia" was shown at the VIII International Festival of Orthodox culture "PEIPUS" in Estonia.

In September 2014 "Wolfhound" was selected in the competition program of the XII Baikal International Festival of Documentary and Popular-Science Films "People and Environment" in Irkutsk. The films "Go and Come back a Winner!" and "Wolfhound" were shortlisted for the II International Film Festival "Eastern Pomorye" held in Khabarovsk in October 2014. The films "Africa: Blood and Beauty" and "Wolfhound" were shown in the program "From A to A" and "TV BOX" at the Russian Festival of author's documentary films "ARTDOCFEST - 2014".

In November 2014 in Solzhenitsyn House for the Russian Diaspora took place the screening of the film "Old man Stepan, Martian, and Mamelfa… or Russian old believers in Bolivia".

In December 2014 "The Reindeer People" was shown at the online Culture Unplugged Film Festival 2015: Humanity Explored from New Zealand, India, Indonesia, and USA.

In April 2016 "Ivory. A crime story" was shown during a special event at the Festival of Art of Cinematography in Guinea-Conakry.

In May 2016 "Ivory. A crime story" won the award for Best Feature Documentary at the 7th New York City International Film Festival (NYCIFF).

In June 2016 "Ivory. A crime story" was premiered in Russia during the 38 Moscow International Film Festival.

On August 20, 2016 "Ivory. A Crime Story" by Sergey Yastrzhembsky was shown in Rolan Cinema during the Esperanza International Film Festival in the Eco-films Program.

On September 11, 2016 "Ivory. A Crime Story" was shown in Magadan in the frame of the Esperanza International Film Festival.

In September 2016 "Africa: Blood and Beauty" was awarded Best documentary prize at the Views of the World Film and Music Festival in Montreal. Sergey Yastrzhembskiy also got two awards: “Best director” and Special Prize of the jury “For humanism in cinema art” for "Ivory. A Crime Story", which was the closing film of Festival.

On September 29, 2016 "Ivory. A Crime Story" had an Asian Premiere at the XII Eurasia International Film Festival in the frame of Eurasia Docs program in Kazakhstan.

On October 7, 2016 "The Reindeer People" was awarded the Prize of Interantional Jury at the 32nd Annual Agrofilm Festival in Nitra, Slovakia.

On October 21st, 2016 "Ivory. A Crime Story" had its successful Italian premiere at Rome Film Festival. The director Sergey Yastrzhembskiy received the Jury Award for his cinematographic career. What’s more, the City Administration of Rome also awarded the director for the investigation documentary that speaks of an important social issue.

On November 5, 2016 "Ivory. A Crime Story" took part in the Festival of Russian films 'Sputnik in Poland' held in Warsaw.

On November 22, 2016 "Ivory. A Crime Story" was shown in competition of the XXI International Environmental 'Green vision' Film Festival, held in St. Petersburg, Russia.

On November 22, 2016 the investigative documentary by Sergey Yastrzhembskiy "Ivory. A Crime Story" was submitted for consideration for the Feature Doc Oscar at the 89th Academy Awards.

On December 1, 2016 Sergey Yastrzhembsky's film "Purifying by the Sun" about the Yakut New Year Yyiah was shown in Tyumen International Film Festival "Zero +" in the competition "Culture of Indigenous People of Russia". Two cameramen, who worked on the project, Yury Efremov and Nikolay Tarkhanov, were awarded a Prize for Best cinematography.

On December 14, 2016 "Ivory. A Crime Story" by Sergey Yastrzhembsky was shown in the Information Program of the XXII International Human Rights Film Festival 'Stalker', Moscow, Russia.

On January 23, 2017 "Ivory. A Crime Story" by Sergey Yastrzhembsky was shown in the Library of cinema named Sergei Eisenstein in Moscow. 

On January 27, 2017 "Ivory. A Crime Story" won the Golden Eagle Award 2016 of the National Academy of Picture Arts and Science of Russia as the "Best Documentary Film". 

The Italian version of the film by Sergey Yastrzhembskiy 'Ivory. A Crime Story' was shown with big success on September 26-27th, 2017 in 8 biggest cities in Italy. The distributor of the film was the famous company Koch Media.

In October 2017 "Tigers and Humans" won the Best Russia Film Award at the 7th International Wildlife Conservation Film Festival (WCFF) in New York.

On April 27, 2018 the film Tigers and Humans and it's author Sergey Yastrzhembsky were awarded the Best Nature Defenders Film Award at the closing ceremony of the International Maritime & Adventure film festival "The Sea Calls!" in Saint Petersburg, Russia.