Russian tycoon film stolen a second time: director

Wed Feb 9, 2011 1:06pm EST
 
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BERLIN (Reuters) - The finished version of a German documentary about jailed Russian oil tycoon Mikhail Khodorkovsky was reported stolen last week in Berlin.

Director Cyril Tuschi told Reuters it was the second time that material for his film "Khodorkovsky" has been stolen in the past few weeks. The first time the film was taken from his hotel room on the Indonesian resort island of Bali.

"I booked a flight to Bali...to do the final editing on my laptop," he said. "And after four days, when I had just finished, it got stolen out of my hotel room."

Berlin police are investigating the second theft in which two hard drives and two laptops containing the film were stolen from the office of Tuschi's production company. So far police have no leads.

The film will still premiere at the Berlin International Film Festival on February 14 as planned after Tuschi delivered an earlier version to the festival, should the material stolen in Bali not be recovered.

"In Bali, I didn't take (the theft) seriously," Tuschi said. "People joked to me and said 'even Trotsky got killed in Mexico'."

Khodorkovsky traces the trial and imprisonment of the former oligarch and Kremlin critic who was once one of the world's wealthiest men before he was convicted in Russia on multi-billion dollar theft and money laundering charges.

The former head of defunct Yukos oil company was first jailed in 2003 and his prison term was lengthened in December by six years to 2017. An unfinished version of the documentary was screened for Berlin press in late January. One attendee said that the film was "extremely well-crafted" and presented a "neutral view."

(Writing by Eric Kelsey; editing by Paul Casciato)

 
<p>Jailed Russian former oil tycoon Mikhail Khodorkovsky (R) looks out of the defendant's cage as he attends a court session in Moscow, October 19, 2010. REUTERS/Tatyana Makeyeva</p>