In this photo taken on Tuesday, Aug. 1, 2017, Orthodox protesters gather during a protest against the release of a movie depicting a liaison of Russia's last czar in Moscow, Russia. (AP Photo/Alexander Zemlianichenko)
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Russia on Thursday approved the cinema release of a racy film about Tsar Nicholas II's affair with a ballerina, despite protests from opponents and even threats of arson attacks.Matilda, a film directed by Alexei Uchitel focuses on Nicholas II's historically documented relationship with ballerina Mathilde Kschessinska.Despite having watched only the trailer, conservative, nationalist and Russian Orthodox protesters have condemned the film, saying Nicholas II must be shown as an "untouchable" holy figure.Director Uchitel has refused to alter the film and has even said he hopes for an Oscar nomination.
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