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The Winning Generation

December 15, 2022


The Winning Generation


The Winning Generation

by Marco De Stefanis
BIND Docs | The Netherlands and EiE Film | Italy



Since he was 14 Shahen is involved in his family’s fight for the independence of Armenia. Now at 23, he founded a political party. A coming-of-age story, in which Shahen’s political fight runs parallel to his own independence from his family legacy.


Shahen was only 14 when, during a protest side by side with his father Shant against government corruption and Russian omnipotence in his country, he was arrested by the police. Now 23, he is the leader of the Shant Alliance political party he founded in 2021, named after his father. It is a tribute to his father, who was released in 2018, and a smart political move given the notoriety of the father.
From that first regional election victory against the Prime Minister party, the film looks back on Shahen’s boyhood, highlights his current strategy to increase his power and looks ahead at his future plans. We see the steps he will take in the coming period on his way to the national elections in late 2023. He will discover whether his ambition to become Armenia’s youngest president stems from youthful bravado or whether he is indeed such a promise that he could eventually have a serious chance of success.
His need to find his own way falters with the deep connection he feels with his family. He is tied to his family with so many political and emotional threads that detaching is a painful path full of obstacles. For him, the personal is political and the political is personal.
The film shows that the human thirst for freedom and independence can grow into a strong counterforce against corruption and political and economic dependence and that there are people who are willing to pay a heavy price for it.

Director’s Profile

Marco De Stefanis is an Italo-Dutch filmmaker who after his studies in Physics at the University of Rome followed a completely different career path working on several television programs in Italy for Rai, Mediaset, and abroad for Discovery Channel, History Channel. Mainly working in documentaries filmed in Italy, Mexico, Colombia, Egypt, Congo, Nepal, and children television programs as the hit series “Amazing History “. Since 2001 he lives in the Netherlands with his wife Sanneke and their three children. He initially decided to expand his know-how at the Binger Film Instituut participating to the first “Documentary Director Coaching Program”. He is now working as documentary filmmaker and freelance creative director for advertising agencies. He teaches filmmaking at SAE institute, and he’s invited lecturer at UvA. His last award-winning long feature documentary “Waiting for Giraffes” premiered in competition at IDFA and his new feature long documentary “Bombing Pompeii” (Windfall Films – London) is now entering the postproduction phase and it will be aired on National Geographic by the end of this year.

Company Profile

BIND’s objective is to tell striking stories that move and inspire, that open eyes and take root. Our films have proven to be a powerful way to portray contemporary topics in an intriguing or surprising manner. We produced the international and 4 Golden Calf award-winning feature film Gluckauf, the feature film The Judgement which also won 4 Golden Calf awards and several international awards, and the family film My Extraordinary Summer with Tess (special mention Generation Berlinale 2019), which has won 20 international awards and was released in more than 12 countries. Our latest minority co-production A Thousand Fires opened Locarno’s Semaine de la Critique 2021, where it won Marco Zucchi Award. This film was in competition at IDFA 2021, CPH:DOX 2022 and for the European Film Awards.
BIND Docs is established in 2018 and has released several short documentaries. We just shot The Butler Academy, a four-part TV-series by Marlies Smeenge in coproduction with VPRO. Bibi Fadlalla is currently shooting Fathers a mid-length feature coproduced with NTR.
EiE film is an independent production company based in Turin Italy, always oriented towards the international market. From the major international political events to the local micro-stories able to change the world, from the alternative economic models to the brilliant entertainment, our productions aim to tell stories of bright and surprising people, urgent and universal.