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All about the filming of the STB TRACE series in an exclusive interview with the chief editor

About force majeure, difficult filming, and replacement of actors in an interview with Nina Ponomarova, editor-in-chief of the TV series Trace.

– Can you tell us about some kind of force majeure, disruptions to filming, ambulance calls, cataclysms, mysticism. How it was, how it got out.

– The most global case was when Tonya Khizhnyak (Chervona) broke her leg right on the set. Moreover, at the beginning of the shooting day, she had difficult scenes: she rode a motorcycle, ran after suspects. And then the forest, Chervona was watching the suspect, moves away behind the tree and fallen into a small hole with her foot – she just put her foot unsuccessfully and broke it. Tonya heroically completed the shift, in the evening they were taken to the hospital – a plaster cast. The series had to be finished, so Chervona was removed from some scenes, replaced with other characters, and some of the scenes where Chervona was needed were filmed so that the actress sat or stood, leaning on something. Then there was a long period of rehabilitation, the plate in the leg – for the first month Tonya was not removed, and for the second month they specially wrote scripts so that Chervona did not drop out of investigations, but also to move as little as possible – basically sat, doing examinations.

– How often did you have to replace characters?

– Not often, but there was a case when an episodic actor was traveling to Kyiv by train from Kharkiv and slept through his stop. He woke up in Vinnytsia. There was no way to wait for his arrival, so the director of the series played his role. Chervona (Khizhnyak).

– Did the actors learn to hold their weapons correctly?

– Ilya Ponomarenko (Dmitrenko) studied shooting and driving a car. Tonya Khizhnyak (Chervona) especially for the episode, in which she worked undercover in a sports club and was kidnapped for deadly knife fights, trained for several days with an instructor in hand-to-hand combat and knife fighting.

– And what about fights, fighting techniques? Did the actors do it somewhere? In the case of the same arrest, such techniques are likely to be used.

– If the scene of the battle or detention is simple, the director plays it in conjunction with the actors (everyone is already quite experienced, we shoot the Traсe for a year and a half almost every day). But if there is a difficult scene of a fight or detention, then stuntmen are involved. They put up a fight and perform complex stunts (for example, when, according to the plot, the character is hit by a car, or falls from the balcony).

– How long did it take to build the OCA office? What is there?

– In the SIA office, in addition to the offices and the interrogation room, there is everything: a laboratory, a morgue, a garage for inspecting a car or some large-scale investigative experiments, a shooting gallery. It took + – 2 months to build the pavilion.

– Where do you get cars for filming?

– Police cars are rented, this is also movie police. We involve them in the filming as needed. Sometimes we use the transport provided by the Ministry of Emergencies.

– Does the group of scriptwriters have consultants with whom they consult if there is any controversial point? How many of them, who did they work with, how often they consult, maybe you sometimes call to the site.

– We do not call them to the site. In season 1, a consultant-investigator was involved several times – they clarified the wording, investigation, or interrogation processes. If you have any questions about examinations, we are lucky here. The editor-in-chief (me) has relatives who are forensic experts, so I sometimes use family ties and clarify something. We rarely seek advice now – we have already studied a little everything in a year and a half. If there is any special expertise, then it happens that we find information in textbooks for forensic science.

Link to the interview Gallery