Meeting Gorbachev

Talk Tuesday 10th September, 7:00PM

Join us for a special preview screening of feature documentary Meeting Gorbachev, by legendary filmmaker Werner Herzog and Emmy Award winning Director, André Singer ahead of its October UK release.

As the eighth and final leader of the Soviet Union, Mikhail Gorbachev is one of the 20th Century’s most defining politicians, a figure equally defined by the vision of transparency that led his efforts to expand and restructure his nation, and the lost potential left in the wake of the USSR’s disintegration. Nearly three decades since his removal from power, the 87-year-old Gorbachev sits down with Herzog for a series of exclusive one-on-one conversations on his remarkable life and legacy, at a time when the former President finds himself more removed than ever from the defining ideologies of Russian leadership.

The film is both a riveting documentary and deeply humanising portrait filled with unforgettable archive plus interviews with key political players from the last thirty years. As Herzog explores the conditions of Gorbachev’s unlikely rise to power and subsequent achievements through a surprisingly candid and friendly rapport, his ever-present themes soon emerge to shape a timely study of the unstable and temporal nature of those in the world’s most powerful positions.

“With Mikhail Gorbachev… Werner Herzog has finally met his match.” – Indiewire 

The screening will be followed by a Q&A with co-director André Singer and producer Svetlana Palmer chaired by journalist and producer Carol Nahra. 




André Singer is a filmmaker and anthropologist. He worked for Granada Television in the 1970s on World in Action and A Disappearing World. In the 1980s for the BBC he founded the documentary series Fine Cut (which later became Storyville) where he worked as either a Commissioner, Executive or Producer with many leading filmmakers including Jean Rouch, Fred Wiseman, D A A Pennebaker, Bob Drew, Mike Grigsby and Vikram Jayanti, and where he first linked up with Werner Herzog by commissioning Lessons of Darkness. He has played a role subsequently on fourteen of Werner’s films including being Producer on Into the Inferno, The Wild Blue Yonder and Fireball. More recently as an Executive Producer and through his company Spring Films in London, Singer worked on Josh Oppenheimer’s Oscar nominated films The Act of Killing and The Look of Silence. As a director he was awarded the RTS, Peabody and an Emmy for his 2015 Holocaust film Night Will Fall and in 2017 completed the anti-nuclear film Where the Wind Blew which won the Raven Award for best feature documentary at DocUtah. His current film as co-director with Herzog is Meeting Gorbachev which will be launched in the UK in November to coincide with commemorations of the fall of the Berlin Wall in 1989. As an anthropologist he was President of the Royal Anthropological Institute of Great Britain and Ireland between 2014 and 2018 and is currently a Professorial Associate of SOAS.

Moderator: Carole