This film would not have been ever made if it were not for one notorious incident. The idea to make Andin came to me at the National Museum of Shanghai where I once attended an exhibition of ancient coins dedicated to the Silk Road that brought together dozens of nations combined in a small dark chamber.
I spent the next six months researching, trying to find out more about first contacts between East and West. Why was this subject chosen as the basis for the film? Since my very childhood, I was fascinated with the idea of the meeting of the two worlds. How can a human being perceive other men that were shaped in a completely different historical context? This is what the meeting of Montezuma and Cortez in the old Mexican capital of Tenochtitlan (now Mexico City), or the Mongols’ encounter with European states, was about.
I was looking for a similar story for my plot. And my choice fell on the Armenian nation as one of the oldest and least studied phenomena in human history. Many texts have never been translated into European languages simply because of very few international researchers proficient in Armenian. This is exactly why I wanted to make my own contribution to world history in an attempt to close the existing gaps with new information, at the same time doing my best to maintain its academic credibility. Finding the right balance to make the film interesting for both professional researchers and regular viewers appeared to be the most difficult task.
The very first version of the script consisted of 600 pages and was designed to cover an 8 to 12 episode television series. However, during filming we often encountered traces of dramatic events that occurred in the past. This made us change the initial idea. While editing the film, I decided to stick to its television format, but in the meantime I changed it into a two-hour epic about human nature that would never be able to find peace and overcome that invincible desire for the unknown. The film became a reflection of ourselves, the authors who set out in a breathtaking pursuit of knowledge from dusty chambers of world’s largest libraries and on to a journey to 11 countries worldwide. In one of those countries, India, a member of our crew died during the 2012 dengue outbreak.
I sincerely hope that our film will allow you to take a new look at world history and stimulate ordinary people’s desire to look for answers far from their computer monitors in the most remote corners of the world.