The Man Who Saved the World

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The Man Who Saved the World
The Man Who Saved the World poster.jpg
Cinema poster
Directed byPeter Anthony
Produced byJakob Staberg
Written byPeter Anthony
StarringStanislav Petrov
Sergey Shnyryov
Kevin Costner
Music byKristian Eidnes Andersen
CinematographyKim Hattesen
Anders Löfstedt
Edited byMorten Højbjerg
  • Statement Film
  • Light Cone Pictures
  • Studio Mao (in association with)
Release date
LanguageEnglish and Russian

The Man Who Saved the World is a 2014 feature-length Danish documentary film by film maker Peter Anthony about Stanislav Petrov, a former lieutenant colonel of the Soviet Air Defence Forces and his role in preventing the 1983 Soviet nuclear false alarm incident from leading to nuclear holocaust.

The film premiered in October 2014 at the Woodstock Film Festival in Woodstock, New York, winning; "Honorable Mention: Audience Award Winner for Best Narrative Feature" and "Honorable Mention: James Lyons Award for Best Editing of a Narrative Feature."[1] On February 22, 2018 the film premiered in Russia at the Documentary Film Center in Moscow.


On 26 September 1983, the computers in the Serpukhov-15 bunker outside Moscow, which housed the command centre of the Soviet early warning satellite system, twice reported that U.S. intercontinental ballistic missiles were heading toward the Soviet Union. Stanislav Petrov, who was duty officer that night, suspected that the system was malfunctioning and managed to convince his superiors of the same thing. He argued that if the U.S. was going to attack pre-emptively it would do so with more than just five missiles, and that it was best to wait for ground radar confirmation before launching a counter-attack.

Production notes[edit]

In the film, footage of Petrov today is intertwined with re-enactments of the dramatic moments in 1983. Sergey Shnyryov plays Petrov in the re-enactments.[2]

Peter Anthony made the film over a decade; the process was difficult because of Petrov's reluctance to open up. Anthony said: "He is quite difficult to work with, as in his day, you could still go to the gulag for disclosing unauthorised information, and as an ex-soldier, he wasn't really interested in discussing his personal feelings. That though, is the beauty of the story."[3]



Hot Docs Canadian International Documentary Festival

  • Nominated, Best International Documentary



  • Nominated, Politiken's Audience Award
  • Nominated, Nordic Dox Award

Woodstock Film Festival

  • Won, Honorable Mention: Audience Award for Best Narrative Feature
  • Won, Honorable Mention: James Lyons Award for Best Editing of a Narrative Feature
  • Nominated, Jury Prize: Best Narrative Feature


Nordisk Panorama

  • Nominated, Nordic Documentary Film Award

Sunscreen Film Festival, US

  • Won, Festival Prize: Best Feature Film


Robert Festival / Danish Film Academy Award

  • Won, Robert: Best Documentary (Årets dokumentarfilm)
  • Nominated, Robert: Best Original Score (Årets score)
  • Nominated, Audience Award

Bodil Awards / Danish Film Critics Award

  • Won, Bodil: Best Documentary (Bedste dokumentarfilm)

See also[edit]


  1. ^ "2014 Woodstock Film Festival Honors Darren Aronofsky, Announces Audience Awards". Indiewire. 21 October 2014. Retrieved 26 April 2015.
  2. ^ "Sergey Shnyryov". IMDb. Retrieved 2017-09-20.
  3. ^ "How did one grumpy Russian halt armageddon?". The Daily Telegraph. 11 May 2015. Retrieved 2016-10-30.

External links[edit]