Saturday, August 21, 2010

Reel People: Rachel Weisz is Kathryn Bolkovac

The film is The Whistleblower. The film biography/expose the feature length debut of Larysa Kondracki who directed and wrote this script with co-writer Eilis Kirwan.

Kathryn Bolkovac

Kathryn Bolkovac, was trained as a police officer in the United States. As a mother of 3, the woman in her 30s left Nebraska when she was hired on by DynCorp, a US Military contractor hired by the United Nations to train Bosnian police in the country following the Bosnian war that ended in 1995.

When Bolkovac went to Bosnia she made some disturbing observations related to UN Peacekeepers and contractors engaging in prostitution, the purchase of young girls for sex slaves, and human trafficking.

Bolkovac seems to have connected with some women who had escaped injustice and abuse and began to collect information relating to horrible acts of human rights abuses of her fellow employees and government officials, she began to present her information she had found to higher ups within the organization of DynCorp.

Bolkovac exposed many details, including peacekeepers using funds to exchange hired sex slaves, many non-Russians transported from Russia, as well as peacekeepers exchanging food for sex with girls as young as 15.

Despite the evidence and information Bolkovac provided, she did not see a response. In fact, she was moved within the company, and terminated on grounds that she falsified her time keeping records.

Bolkovac is not the only one to have brought forth claims of trafficking of human sex slaves. Ben Johnson an aircraft mechanic in Bosnia also brought forth similar claims. Both Ben Johnson and Bolkovac were fired.

In 2002 in an employment tribunal in England, Bolkovac was deemed to have been unfairly dismissed and was to be paid by DynCorp for damages. From their Bolkovac has sought out opportunities to increase exposure to the problem of human trafficking.

She now lives in the Netherlands with her children.

The Whistleblower

The Whistleblower will tell this heavy story that on top of being filled with intrigue and powerful characters, also seems to serve as a purpose to further expose the issues associated with government employees and contractors committing human rights violations, often with limited or no punishment for their actions abroad.

Oscar winner Rachel Weisz will play this powerful lead character alongside Vanessa Redgrave, David Straitharn, Monica Bellucci, and Danish actor Nikolaj Lie Kaas.

Oscar winner Vanessa Redgrave plays Madeline Rees head of the UN Human Rights Commission in Sarajevo.

This certainly doesn't seem like one of the big popular films of the film season, but you can never underestimate the critical love that may be displayed when an actress like Weisz plays a strong female lead.

Will Rachel Weisz's portrayal of this vocal peacekeeper receive critical attention, perhaps even an Oscar nomination/win, for portraying this Real (Reel) Person?

Photo from filmofilia.


Andrew K. said...

I'm fiercely devoted, somewhat, to Vanessa Redgrave so I'm keeping track of this and Rachel Weisz is so good I love her in everything - including The Mummy, which I really like actually. She's got some good projects coming up and I like the sound of this (PS. Did you see Agora?)

Anonymous said...

Before Yugoslavia was dismembered (by the U.S. and it's allies) no one
knew that human trafficking existed in their country. Thanks to "peace keepers" and contractors, what was once a prosperous and beautiful country has been turnedby the Western Imperialist medlers into awhorehouse.
I have worked work as a translator
for hundreds of refugees for the last twelve years and every one of them has told me that they would have never come to this country had it not been for the U.S. instigated war.

Xarl said...