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Moscow to Get Palace of Film Festivals, Says Mikhalkov

A snapshot of Nikita Mikhalkov, president of Moscow International Film Festival, during the interview on Moskva 24 TV channel.

Construction of Moscow's long-planned and much-delayed Palace of Film Festivals may begin by the end of the year, acclaimed filmmaker Nikita Mikhalkov said during a briefing at the ongoing Moscow International Film Festival.

"The Palace will be built on the riverfront on Frunzenskaya Naberezhnaya … I hope that construction will begin in late 2014 or early 2015," Mikhalkov said, RIA Novosti reported. Mikhalkov — who directed and acted in "Burned by the Sun" and "the Barber of Siberia" — serves as president of the festival, which ends on Saturday.

German architects have created a "very beautiful plan" for the facility, Mikhalkov said, adding that Russians "will not be ashamed of it."

A Palace of Film Festivals was first proposed in 2008 under former Moscow Mayor Yury Luzhkov as a massive platform for all the capital's film festivals, premieres and major musical events. The city initially planned to build the facility on Korovy Val, not far from Gorky Park, but Luzhkov vetoed the idea and proposed an area outside the city center instead.

Unhappy with this option, the Moscow International Film Festival in turn proposed other locations, including one within Gorky Park itself. Mikhalov announced in 2012 that the palace would be built in a former industrial zone near the Luzhniki Olympic Complex.

The latest location, Frunzenskaya Naberezhnaya, would put the facility in prime territory on the Moscow River, directly across from Gorky Park and not far from Luzhniki.

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