• 09.08.2023

The Big Picnic is the film that was originally scheduled for release in Ukraine on February 24, 2022. But the full-scale russian invasion delayed the premiere of the film, the production of which was completed in 2021. This film about defending your borders has now taken on a whole new meaning. Catch The Big Picnic in theaters from October 5 (in Ukraine) 


On the eve of what was supposed to be its official release, on February 23, 2022, a high-profile advanced premiere screening of the comedy The Big Picnic took place in the capital of Ukraine. The event brought together stars from the world of movies and showbiz, representatives of the film industry, and partners. The camera flashes and the sheer number of TV cameras around attested to the hype that the movie has created. That was the last day of our peaceful life. The only memories we have of it are the vivid photos that have never been published... The advanced premiere screening rooms were filled with hugs and laughter. We believed that the next day, audiences in cinemas across the country would experience the same emotions, as the film's national distribution was about to begin.  



However, February 24 began for each of us not in cinemas, but in bomb shelters. And most of the film’s creators and cast, instead of going on a promotional tour, traveled to training grounds, humanitarian aid warehouses, or even to the front line and took up arms to defend our country. 

Harik Bircha, the author of the idea and co-screenwriter of the film, joined the Armed Forces of Ukraine in the first few days of the full-scale invasion and now holds the rank of senior sergeant, serving in parts of the country where the fighting is at its most intense. 

 Oleksii Trytenko, who plays the chief investigator, is also serving in the Armed Forces of Ukraine. He helped liberate the Kyiv Oblast from the invaders, and his photo reports on social media helped people learn about the tragic consequences of the arrival of the “russian world” in Bucha and Irpin. 


Yurii Tkach, who plays one of the main characters (Tolia Nalyvaichenko), joined the defense forces of Kyiv in the first few days of the full-scale invasion. Yurii is now an active volunteer, organizing and participating in the collection of humanitarian aid. Together with his colleagues, he gives military charity concerts and provides humanitarian aid in various parts of Ukraine: near Kharkiv, in Bakhmut and beyond the Dnipro. 


VERKA SERDUCHKA (who has a cameo role in the film and sings the main theme song) became a symbol of resilience for Kyiv residents in the first few weeks of the full-scale invasion, and is currently touring the world in support of Ukraine. Olena Kravets (who plays Tetiana Drahomanovaparticipates in educational and charity initiatives, particularly those aimed at helping children. Andrii Isaienko (Yevhen Drahomanov) is engaged in volunteer activities, organizing fundraisers for humanitarian and military needs, and, as a member of the Union of Entrepreneurs of the Television and Film Industry, he has also signed a Memorandum of Cooperation on providing all types of support to the National Guard of Ukraine. Iryna Hatun (Raia Nalyvaichenko) takes part in charity auctions and raffles. Together with her colleagues from the Zhinochyi Kvartal and Chornyi Kvadrat, she is touring Ukraine, putting smiles on Ukrainians’ faces. 

Among the members of the film crew, three joined the ranks of the Armed Forces of Ukraine, the Territorial Defense Forces, and the Patrol Police, two went to war as military correspondents, and ten became volunteers. One of the main locations in the film (the house of a corrupt official named Khomiak, played by Mykhailo Zhonin) was bombed after the occupation of Irpin and now looks like this... 


Although the enemy altered our plans and the premiere had to be postponed, The Big Picnic will nonetheless be brought to audiences in the cinemas of Ukraine, starting on October 5, 2023. This story tells us that despite all our differences and quarrels, when faced with a common threat we can become a powerful, unified force and emerge victorious. The film will tell the story of the Nalyvaichenko and Drahomanov families, who decided to have a family barbecue one sunny day. One family plans to have a big, rowdy feast, while the other yearns to reconnect with nature. The only problem is that there's this picture-perfect meadow – and both families are very fond of it. Will they be able to reach a compromise? 

The creators of this family comedy promise a lot of laughs, the rousing song “There is a proposal” from the soundtrack, by the unsurpassed VERKA SERDUCHKA, some good old hits by our favorite singers and, of course, a stellar cast: Yurii Tkach, Olena Kravets, Iryna Hatun, Andrii Isaienko, VERKA SERDUCHKA&band, Mykhailo Zhonin, Positiff, Oleksii Trytenko, Andrii Piatov and Yevhen Konoplianka.  

Watch The Big Picnic in your local movie theater and get inspired to take big steps for the sake of our common Victory. 
To see a selection of photos, go to: 

The film was created with the support of the Ukrainian State Film Agency in 2021. 
The project’s media partner is 1+1 media. 

Stay tuned to the official pages on Instagram and Facebook, as well as on the FILM.UA Distribution pages on Instagram and Facebook for the latest updates, and be the first to know all the details about The Big Picnic. 


The comedy revolves around two completely different families: the Drahomanovs, who work in the arts and education, and the Nalyvaichenkos, who are local businessmen. During the spring holidays, they decide to have a traditional picnic barbecue. That’s where fate brings them together in the same meadow, one that each family considers to be “theirs.” The families have an argument that escalates into a grotesque “war” over a barbecue spot. Suddenly, a third contender appears: a fugitive corrupt official who has hidden his money in the same meadow, and who later takes the younger children from these families hostage, demanding that they give back the money that has disappeared from his stash. 

What follows are tricks, set-ups and confrontations, adventures, unexpected guests and huge amounts of money, and different views on everything: ranging from “which barbecue marinade is best” to “who’s living life the right way.” This story tells us that despite all our differences and quarrels, when faced with a common threat we can become a powerful, unified force and emerge victorious. 

Title: The Big Picnic 
Production: FILM.UA Production and TRK Ukraine, 2021 
Release date: October 5, 2023 
Genre: comedy 
Running time: 90 min. 
Distributor: FILM.UA Distribution and Kinomania 
Director: Oleh Zborovskyi 
Director of photography: Mykola Iliushin, Oleksii Lamakh 

Author of the idea: Harik Bircha 
Screenwriters: Artur Lerman, Viacheslav Ostrovtsev, Harik Bircha 
Producers: Iryna Kostiuk, Victoriia Korohod, Nadiia Korotushka, Natalia Strybuk 
Cast: Yurii Tkach (Tolia Nalyvaichenko), Olena Kravets (Tetiana Drahomanova), Andrii Isaienko (Yevhen Drahomanov), Iryna Hatun (Raia Nalyvaichenko), Mykhailo Zhonin (Stepan Khomiak), Oleksii Zavhorodnii/Positiff (Hena), Ilia Paladin (Yaroslav Drahomanov), Marho Krupina-Binkovska (Liza Drahomanova), Veronika Lukianenko (Mariana Nalyvaichenko), Alex Berezovskyi (Denyska Nalyvaichenko), Valerii Shvets (Valerianych), Vladyslav Pysarenko (Hrysha). 
With cameo appearances by: VERKA SERDUCHKA & her mother, Andrii Piatov, Yevhen Konoplianka