Leaving to Remain - in UK cinemas from April 28th

19 April 2023

The award winning film LEAVING TO REMAIN follows the lives of three British Roma after Brexit - pre-screenings at London Curzon Bloomsbury; Thursday 20th April, and Leicester Phoenix; Saturday, 22nd April and selected UK cinemas from April 28th.

Book your tickets here.

Watch the official trailer:

 “One of the most moving films focused on Roma inequality”


LEAVING TO REMAIN explores the experience of migration through the lives of three extraordinary characters - a lawyer, a policeman, and a student – who belong to one of the Britain’s largest but least understood minority communities.  This compelling and moving feature documentary directed by Mira Erdevički will be released by Verve Pictures in UK cinemas on 28 April.

Petr Torák, Denisa Gannon and Ondrej Oláh are Roma who settled in the UK to escape from racial persecution in Central Europe. Although they came over twenty years ago, they still feel connected to their native Slovakia and the Czech Republic. By using the first ever British-Roma film crew, LEAVING TO REMAIN was able to gain unparalleled access to a Roma community. When Britain went into Covid lockdown, the three subjects of the film were guided and encouraged to become film-makers themselves. With remarkable candour, they revealed the impact of Covid, and how the aftermath of Brexit has forced them to reassess their identities. What emerged is a quietly radical film. 

“The pandemic forced us to adopt a new filming concept, using iPhones to record our protagonists' lives with intimate access, which presented an opportunity to reveal the Roma community from the inside. This material quickly became the core of the film, with crew-generated material available for flashbacks to the pre-Covid era,” explains film director Mira Erdevički.

Leaving to Remain
Denisa Gannon

LEAVING TO REMAIN offers something completely new to British viewers, who are unlikely ever to have encountered Roma on British screens before: a compelling and nuanced portrayal of a community which raises bigger questions about the identity of post-Brexit Britain. Rarely do we glimpse the realities of our bureaucratic systems – both when they work, as with inclusive mainstream education; and when they don't, as for thousands of vulnerable people forced to navigate the complexities of the post-Brexit EU settlement scheme.

Leaving to Remain
Ondrej Oláh

Roma are the largest ethnic minority in Europe, with between 10 and 12 million people. However, as an EU report published last year confirms, European countries have struggled to integrate them: 80% of Roma live in poverty compared to an EU average of 17%; and over 70% of young Roma leave the education system early, compared with 10% of young people from the general population, which often has a knock on impact on their chances for employment and life expectancy. These issues lie behind the human dramas depicted in LEAVING TO REMAIN where for example, the camera follows Petr Torak providing an injured manual worker with basic provisions to feed his family; or where Ondrej Olah confounds the low expectations of his Slovak teachers by completing a First Class Honours Degree.

Leaving to Remain

“This huge ethnic minority is largely unknown and often misrepresented. Our aim has been to make a film that breaks down the negative stereotyping of the Roma, which is still so prevalent in media everywhere,” adds Lucie Wenigerová, the film’s producer.

Leaving to Remain

LEAVING TO REMAIN shows how determined individuals can benefit from opportunities in Britain that are still denied to them in their home countries; but it also reveals how hard it is for this marginalised community to find a sense of belonging.

A feature documentary by Mira Erdevički


Winner of the DA Films Award, One World Festival, 2022


Featured at the London Migration Festival and the Made in Prague Festival

Mira Erdevički is an award-winning documentary maker, director and writer. Her debut feature-length documentary, Black and White in Colour, was the first Czech film to secure a broadcast on BBC Storyville and went on to win numerous awards. Mira subsequently created several documentaries for European broadcasters – including Somewhere Better, The Man with an Opera House in his Living Room, Sevdah: the Bridge that Survived and Tito’s Ghosts.

Lucie Wenigerová is a Bafta-nominated film and TV producer. Her recent credits include co-producer on a short by Sally Potter, Look at Me; and associate producer on the latest feature film by Sally Potter, The Roads Not Taken, which premiered at the 2020 Berlinale Competition. Her previous credits include producing Strawberry Fields (BBC/Film London) and the Mist series for Channel 5.

90 minutes / Cert tbc / Released by Verve Pictures

Press release from Verve Pictures

(Lead photograph: Petr Torák. All photographs are stills from LEAVING TO REMAIN)