Since early 2011 I have been working on my feature documentary film ‘Bruce Lee and the Outlaw’. This film is a coming of age tale of a young homeless boy and his adoptive father, the king of the tunnels, Bruce Lee. It is produced by Grain media and co-produced by Revolver films in Amsterdam. The film is currently in the final stages of post-production and will be released in fall of 2018.
For 6 years I went back and forth from London to Romania to shoot ‘Bruce Lee and the Outlaw’.
It was during this period that the annexation of Crimea took place by the Russian Federation and this drove me to explore further east as well. Every time I headed to Bucharest I took several different journeys to get there and photographed the people that I met along the way. I visited frozen conflict zones like breakaway Transnistria and its abandoned Soviet villages, bordering between Moldova and Ukraine.
I went to the outskirts of the seaside town Odessa in Ukraine and I spent a lot of time in a makeshift Roma gypsy village in Transylvania which they had called Dallas (yes, after the American TV show) and I traveled by motorbike through Moldova to shoot the historic life in the villages.
Joost Vandebrug is Dutch photographer and filmmaker based in London. He studied fine art and design at Gerrit Rietveld University in Amsterdam He was the subject of a solo exhibition in the 3H gallery at the Amsterdam photography museum, FOAM. His first photography book, Cinci Lei was published in 2014 by DUST magazine. This book was picked up by Huck magazine, Port magazine, Dazed & Confused, i-D magazine and many others.