Decho Taralezhkov

Scriptwriter

Born:

26.10.1983, Sofia (Bulgaria)

Education: 

BA in Dramaturgy, National Academy of Theatre and Film Arts (NATFA), Sofia, Bulgaria

Place of Residence:

Sofia (Bulgaria)

Writes in Languages:

Bulgarian, English

Biography

Decho Taralezhkov is a Bulgarian scriptwriter, mostly known for his collaboration with directors Petar Valchanov and Kristina Grozeva. He co-wrote and acted in their award-winning second feature GLORY (2016), co-wrote and assistant-directed their third feature THE FATHER (2019), and is currently developing their next film TRIUMPH. His other work includes BLUE BIRDS ISLAND (2019), a limited series for kids for the Bulgarian National Television, and the story-driven indie video game ELEA (2018), where he also voices two of the roles. Decho has a degree in Dramaturgy from the National Academy of Theater and Film Arts (NATFA) in Sofia. He is also the singer, guitarist and lyricist of Sofia-based art-rock outfit Stop the Schizo.

Sample of previous work

Projects in development

ТРИУМФ / TRIUMPH

feature film
2nd draft of the script

The winter of 1990. The country is in disarray. Huge lines for bread, flour and gas fill up the city streets. Governments come and go. In the meantime, a group of high-ranking military officers, led by two psychic ladies, are digging a top-secret hole in search of an alien legacy that will make Bulgaria great again.

Attached to the project: co-writer, director, producer
Looking for: co-producer

Keywords: drama, comedy, satire, military operation, top-secret, inspired by real events

ЧЕРНИ ПАРИ ЗА БЕЛИ НОЩИ / BLACK MONEY FOR WHITE NIGHTS

feature film 
first draft

A childless aging couple uses all of their illegally earned savings to fulfill their long-time dream of seeing St. Petersburg and the White Nights. After they become the victims of tourist fraud, the tension between them escalates and past lies start coming to light.

Attached to the project: co-writer, director, producer
Looking for: co-producer

Keywords: dramedy

ТВОЯТ ЧОВЕК ТОНИ / YOUR MAN TONY

TV series
pilot script, show bible 

Falsely hoping that traffic accident compensation cases are the road to making it big, devil may care lawyer and man of the masses Tony Bakalsky finds himself pitted against a corrupt network of insurers, big law firms and outright violent competitors as he struggles to pay mortgage and keep his oddball clients and his family from leaving him for good.

Attached to the project: co-creator, director, producer
Looking for: networks/platforms, co-producers 

KeywordsBalkan dramedy, lawyer, social injustice, based in reality

More from Projects

ДИВИ ЯГОДИ / WILD STRAWBERRIES

feature film
first draft of the script

40 y.o. Daphne is in a bad place in life, when she learns she’s the sole heir of an ancient house in a forlorn Bulgarian village that belonged to her recently deceased 103 y.o. grandmother, whom she didn’t know existed. As she tracks her roots back to the heart of the majestic Rhodope mountain, Daphne has to decide whether to protect the heritage of a family she never knew or sell the land to a company that will tear the house down to tap the unique mineral water that runs below it.

Attached to the project: co-writer, director, producer
Looking for: co-producers, world sales

Keywordsdrama, comedy, trauma, ethnographic, heritage, woman in crisis

TEAM BUILDING

feature fiction
developed script

A group of office co-workers with a strong sense of entitlement are taken on a team building retreat in a secluded mountain hut. Instead of learning ways how to tolerate each other, however, they provoke the wrath of a nationalistic local community and their sociopathic ringleader. What follows is the moral and/or physical demise of everyone involved.

Attached to the project: co-producer
Looking for: director, co-producer

Keywords: psychological thriller, violence, satire, cautionary tale

Filmography and Awards

2019 THE FATHER, feature film directed by Kristina Grozeva & Petar Valchanov, co-writer/1st A.D. – Karlovy Vary IFF: Crystal Globe

2019 BLUE BIRDS ISLAND, 8-part limited series produced by Bulgarian National Television, directed by Kristina Grozeva & Peter Valchanov, co-writer

2018 ELEA, video game, developed by Kyodai Inc., writer/voice actor

2018 LIBERTAS, short film, co-writer

2016 GLORY, feature film directed by Kristina Grozeva & Petar Valchanov, co-writer/actor – Winner of more than 40 international awards, including best screenplay awards from Gijón IFF 2016, Golden Rose Bulgarian FF 2016, Audi Dublin IFF 2017, Valence scénario – Festival international des scénaristes 2017, Herceg Novi Montenegro FF 2017

2008 GROUND-SEA-SWELL, short film directed by Boris Nikolov, co-writer – Forum Honoris Causa 2009 (NATFA student film awards): Best Screenplay, Audience Award; In the Palace ISFF Balchik 2009 – Kodak Award for Best Bulgarian Short

My five favourite films

  1. There Will Be Blood (2007)
    by Paul Thomas Anderson
  2. Dr. Strangelove or: How I Learned to Stop Worrying and Love the Bomb (1964)
    by Stanley Kubrick
  3. Indiana Jones and the Last Crusade (1989)
    by Steven Spielberg
  4. Kin-Dza-Dza (1986)
    by Georgiy Daneliya
  5. Alien (1979)
    by Ridley Scott

Favourite scene I wrote

INT. MOUNTAIN HUT, TAVERN – NIGHT
STANGE returns, staggering, laughing, out of breath and still wearing the haidut cap. Some of the HAIDUTS in the background are tidying up the stage, the rest return to their tables without undressing. THE WIFE is back behind the bar.
The following discussion is a mix of German and Bulgarian:
STANGE
People, that was remarkable! You
have to give it a try some time.
It’s your history after all.
NICKY
This isn’t exactly history, Herr
Stange.
STANGE
I know, I know. But I don’t care!
Boy, that was good! Took me back
years!
BETTY
I was just telling them how much it
suits you to be a haidut. Let me
take a picture of you.
STANGE puts his arm around the shoulders of who’s closest to him at the moment and poses gladly. SNAP.
STANGE
OK, let’s pay for the show and we
can go on with the party.
SUE
Pay for the show?
What?
STANGE
Well, sure. 10 leva per capita
should be alright, don’t you think?
HARRY
But why do we have to pay them?
TERRY
We didn’t ask for it.
DANNY
They practically forced us to watch
it! This is crossing every line!
STANGE
Are you telling me you can’t afford
10 leva? Don’t forget I know how
much you earn.
NICKY
This is not the issue here, Herr
Stange. It just isn’t right. I
mean, this is so typical, people
here will try to fuck you over
however they see fit.
STANGE
Don’t you tell me about “people
here”. You’ve never been here
before. You didn’t even turn your
face to the fucking stage out of
simple respect!
NICKY
That’s not true!
STANGE
You have no idea about “people
here”, and they are your people.
How do you imagine they look after
these props and protect them from
rust and moths, and whatever
pestilence that these cellars are
swarmed with? On goodwill?
(beat)
They made this gesture for us. We
must show some gratitude. Come on,
it’s not like they’re asking for
your souls, is it!
DANNY
(starts to get dressed)
They would have put up the show
anyway, Herr Stange. People like
that just do such weird stuff every
now and then. Which doesn’t mean we
have to pay them just because, see,
they were feeling like it.
(in Bulgarian)
Pay them yourself if you’re so
eager to.
NICKY
It was pretty much enough that we
paid for the gas, anyway.
LENA hesitatingly starts to prepare for departure too. NICKY notices that THE OWNER and several HAIDUTS have overheard the argument, and are slowly closing in. There are muskets in their hands. There are bayonets on the muskets.
STANGE
I’d pay them out of my own pocket
if I had enough cash. I will pay it
back to you on Monday.
NICKY
It’s not about money, Herr Stange,
please sit down. Everybody. Please.
DANNY
Indeed. It’s about principles which
is why I’m leaving. I urge
whoever’s riding with me to hurry
up.
In the meantime, THE OWNER and the HAIDUTS have moved into position between the team builders and the exit door.
THE OWNER
Is there a problem?
DANNY
Yes, there is. It’s called
blackmail.
(overacts)
Now that I think about it, we have
an officer of the law here, maybe
he should take a stance.
THE MAYOR (O.C.)
If you need the law, you talk to
me.
Eyes turn to see where this unsettling voice is coming from. It’s THE MAYOR. He’s sitting at his table, staring at his glass, swinging it around.
DANNY
That won’t be necessary. We are
ridding you of our presence.
THE MAYOR
With whose permission?
A beat.
DANNY
I beg your pardon?
THE MAYOR
What, already?
THE POLICEMAN and THE MAYOR find that laughable.
LENA pulls DANNY’s sleeve and warns him with her eyes to be careful. He gets it.
STANGE
(to NICKY)
What’s going on now?
THE MAYOR
A German?
(Stange nods)
You could have taught them some
discipline, German. We are EU now.
There are rules. Here’s one: you
get a service – you pay for it.
Rules are there to be followed.
STANGE eyes NICKY impatiently.
NICKY
(in German)
He said-
THE MAYOR
He knows what I said. He
understands every word. They train
them to.
STANGE
But what is the meaning of this?
THE MAYOR
No one will leave this building
before its owner and his men – all
dear friends of mine – are paid
what they deserve. This is only
fair.
STANGE realizes he should have kept silence. Suddenly, the pregnant SUE rises in an onslaught of panic.
SUE
We’re leaving. Now.
NICKY
Stay cool.
SUE
(to the Mayor)
Don’t you think you’re overdoing it
a bit?
NICKY
Please! You’re making things worse!
SUE
(putting her coat on)
I have to follow a regimen, which
requires me to be lying in a
horizontal position within an hour
from now, and I intend to do so in
my bed. That is why you’re going to
let me, and him, and her, and
everyone – walk out of this room,
and- here…
She takes her wallet out, fumbles, then simply dumps all its contents on the floor — approx. 50 leva plus change.
SUE (CONT’D)
This is all I got. Take it!
THE MAYOR is watching her with condescension. Then he starts clapping.
SUE loses it and starts for the door. NICKY tries to hold her back out of reflex, but that only amplifies her panic. She pushes him aside with unanticipated strength.
Chaos spreads everywhere like a nuclear reaction. More people are trying to calm SUE down, but she can’t tell friend from foe.
In the eye of the storm, STANGE is desperately trying to restore order.
Somewhere along the chain, LENA is pushed and she involuntarily hits a random HAIDUT in the face. Just as she’s about to apologize, he hits her back and draws blood from her lip.
That does it for TERRY: he disarms the HAIDUT and knocks him down with brief, skillful motions. He uses the rifle to secure a perimeter around LENA. Then somebody’s hand on his back startles him, and he just turns and thrusts the musket. The sound of the bayonet piercing flesh. TERRY freezes. The ruckus suddenly dissipates and the only remaining sound is a gurgle. Dismay grabs a hold of people’s faces. 
PULL BACK TO REVEAL: the bayonet has pierced STANGE’s neck. It’s bloody tip shows on the other side.
STANGE is still alive. He’s choking on his own spit and blood. A few moments pass before his convulsions ease and the dumbfounded TERRY finally lets go of the rifle.
STANGE’s dead body drops to the floor. A puddle of blood starts spreading around his head. In the morbid silence, all that is heard is BETTY’s silent sobbing.

My favourite film quote

“Yeah, well, that’s just, like, your opinion, man.”

The Big Lebowski (1998)