Citizens at War: A Year in Ukraine. FILM.UA Group, Tilt Media, GTV Docs, and Blue Ant International Film a Documentary Series about Ukraine Commissioned by Germany's ZDF

• 16.01.2023

The large-scale international project will include the stories of Ukrainians about this year of the war, exclusive interviews with Volodymyr and Olena Zelensky, and famous Ukrainian politicians and military officials. The series launches in February 2023 on premier European networks to coincide with the first anniversary of the russian invasion of Ukraine

In February 2023, the world premiere of Citizens at War: A Year in Ukraine documentary series will happen. The project is commissioned by the main German broadcaster and media giant ZDF and other premier European networks and is created in large-scale international co-production. From the Ukrainian side, the production was held by FILM.UA Group, British-Australian Tilt Media company, and British GTV Docs joined it. Blue Ant International became the distributor of the project. The series is executive produced by Chris HIlton, Tilman Remme, Victor Mirsky, and Kateryna Vyshnevska. 

Citizens at War: A Year in Ukraine features the unique stories of Ukrainians about how their country has survived the year of the full-scale war. It consists of 6 one-hour episodes: The First Ten Days, Zelensky, Women at War, The Volunteer Army, The Siege of Mariupol, and The Russians.

The series presents a view of the war through the eyes of Ukrainians, who faced all the realities and horrors of it. The project features exclusive and very personal interviews with the Ukrainian President, Volodymyr Zelensky, his wife, Olena, and the Head of President's Office, Andriy Yermak, and details the trauma and triumphs of the war-torn Ukrainian nation and its people.

“We are thrilled to collaborating with the biggest production company in Ukraine for this premium documentary series that offers rare access to Zelensky as well as unique footage to the people who are on the front lines of the invasion in Ukraine,” said Lilla Hurst, Global Head of Acquisitions & Partnerships Blue Ant International. “This project exemplifies our solutions-based approach as a distributor, combined with our commitment to premium, access-driven storytelling.” 

The world thought that Ukraine will fall in a few days. For Ukrainians, this war became an epic battle for survival, so we joined the resistance at every possible frontline. The main goal of Citizens at War: A Year in Ukraine is to tell Europe and the world the story of this war through the voices of Ukrainians themselves, not through foreign experts or the news headlines.

“How the people of a free and democratic society in modern-day Europe rallied, in order to defend their country and national identity against a foreign aggressor, is the most important story of our time,” says Kateryna Vyshnevska, Head of Development and Co-productions FILM.UA Group. “All the partners agree the documentary needed to be told in a way that showed the lives of people behind the headlines.” 

Several film crews in Ukraine were working on the project. The filming took place in December, and the first three episodes will be released in February. The series includes not only the stories of Ukrainian citizens, the president, government representatives, and military officials but also unique videos from personal archives and newly-shot footage.

"With a very short production schedule, I knew finding the right partners was crucial to bring this project together,” says Chris Hilton, CEO and Executive Producer, Tilt Media. “GTV Docs, Film.UA and ZDF enabled us to tell this critical story and award-winning German/British filmmaker, Tilman Remme is the ideal storyteller with his vast experience in films about the history of warfare.”

“This project is unlike any other and reveals the heartache and inspiring determination of the Ukrainian people, a nation that has banded together to resist the military takeover of their country,” said Tilman Remme, Partner and Creative Director, GTV Docs. “I am grateful for the collaborative spirit of all partners and to ZDF for coming in as the main broadcaster.”  



Blue Ant International is a leading worldwide distributor of high-quality, creative content that engages audiences worldwide and across multiple platforms. The company offers a full-service approach to production partners with sales operations in the U.S., the UK and Canada. Blue Ant International has a growing slate of over 5,000 hours of premium content, including distinctive series and formats in five key genres including factual entertainment, specialist factual, high-impact documentaries, kids and family, and scripted. Blue Ant International also has one of the world’s largest offerings of 4K natural history content. Blue Ant International is a division of Blue Ant Media.  

Tilt Media is a freshly-minted media company founded by industry veteran Chris Hilton. The new venture, based in Los Angeles and Australia is committed to seeking out projects with grit, filmmakers with heart, and audiences with curiosity.  Its slate aims for diversity across format, story and talent.

GTV Docs is a high-end factual production company in London producing specialist factual programmes for audiences in North America, Europe, Australia and the Middle East.

FILM.UA Group  is a creative powerhouse and one of the largest Eastern European media groups, operating in global markets and covering the full production cycle: development, production, adaptation and distribution of audiovisual content through a vertical business structure.