Movie Recommendation: Playing the Moldovans at Tennis

If you ever wondered how our country looks in a movie, here we go: Playing the Moldovans at Tennis, a presentation of Moldova from a British comedian.

playing_the_moldovans_at_tennis_276x184The film version of Tony Hawks‘ best selling book Playing the Moldovans at Tennis was filmed during May, June and July 2010 in Moldova, London, Belfast and Israel. It was released in 2012 and the Premiere took place at The Odeon West End, Leicester Square in June 2012 with a star packed audience that included Tony Hawks, many of the cast and crew, Sir Tim Rice, Judy Murray, Tim Brooke-Taylor, Miles Jupp, John Inverdale, Bruno Tonioli, Nick Hancock, Sandi Toksvig, Mark Steel, Marcus Brigstocke and David Baddiel.

The script sticks very closely to the original story when Tony, as he watched TV coverage of England beating Moldova 4-0 in September 1997, made a wager with his friend, the comedian Arthur Smith, (Steve in the film) that he could track down all 11 of the Moldovan players and beat them at

He attempted the unlikely feat by spending several weeks in Moldova and by also taking in Ireland and Israel, but his journey took many unexpected turns and changed from a lighthearted bet to a serious desire to prove to his host family that it is possible to complete surprising and unexpected tasks and to have a positive outlook on life.

It ends with one of them stripping naked and singing the Moldovan National Anthem in South London in front of a large crowd of their friends, which, like the rest of the film, is also true.

The film was co-directed by Tony Hawks and Mikolaj Jaroszewicz, the Polish cinematographer on the Oscar winning Peter and the Wolf.

Tony also wrote the screenplay and produced the project with a very small multi-national team that included Chris White (editor), Tim Jordan (Gaffer), Canan Kadana (camera operator), Ludovic Lasserre (sound), Neil McIntyre & Tom Fennell (boom), Graham Hunt (sparks), Edward Lidster (production designer UK) and Stephanie Zari (1st AD UK).

screeningThe Moldovan crew included Valentina Iusuphodjaev (line producer), Valeriu Mutu (location manager), Victoria Coroban (PA), Vlad Petrea (1st AD) Vlad Lozovan (production designer) and Elena Porumbescu (wardrobe), and from the cast crew were Anatol Durbala, Igor Babiac, Ana Chirita , Silvia Luca, Viorel Cornescu and Ina Surdu.

The film was mainly shot in and around Chişinău in Moldova. The UK filming was at The Grove Tavern, Wilton Tennis Club and The Irish Centre in Wimbledon with additional scenes filmed in Belfast, Tel Aviv and The Red Sea.

The producer’s proceeds were and  will be donated to the Tony Hawks Center in Chişinău that was founded and co-supported by Tony Hawks from the proceeds of the sale of the original book.
Therefore, it is very important to mention that our partnership with Tony Hawks Center from Chisinau has been very effective and you can join our future events whenever you are in Moldova.Here it is one  of the following: Charity Race supporting Tony Hawks Centre in Chisinau, March edition.

If you`re interested to meet a story that would reveal a new view about Moldova,  we strongly recommend you to follow the link to the main page of the movie:






About triptomoldova

Travel agency based on incoming tourism or business travelers. Our aim is to facilitate your visit to Moldova and to make your trip unforgettable. We promise to offer high standard packages for any needs and take care of everything. Moreover, since the satisfaction of our guests is our main priority, we will try to fully perform any special request. Have you any questions, ideas or opinions; please do not let them be just questions, ideas or opinions. Offered Services: -Business Packages -Vacation Packages -Personalised Packages -Accomodation -Personal guide -Meetings with locals -Special Welcome TriptoMoldova: Off The Beaten Path
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