Eastern Promises is a 2007 British-Canadian-American gangster film directed by David Cronenberg, from a screenplay written by Steven Knight. The film stars Viggo Mortensen, Naomi Watts, Vincent Cassel, and Armin Mueller-Stahl. It tells a story of a Russian-British midwife, Anna (Watts), who delivers the baby of a drug-addicted 14-year old Russian prostitute who dies in childbirth. After Anna learns that the teen was lured into prostitution by the Russian Mafia in London, the leader of the Russian gangsters (Mueller-Stahl) threatens the baby's life to keep Anna from telling the police about their sex trafficking ring. As Anna tries to protect the baby, she is enmeshed deeper into the criminal underworld, and she is threatened by the Mafia leader's son (Cassel) and warned off by the son's strong-arm man (Mortensen). Principal photography began November 2006, in locations in and around London. The film has been noted for its plot twist, the subject of sex trafficking, and for its violence and realistic depiction of Russian career criminals, which includes detailed portrayal of the tattoos which indicate their crimes and criminal status. Eastern Promises received positive critical reception, appearing on several critics' "top 10 films" lists for 2007. The film has won several awards, including the Audience Prize for best film at the Toronto International Film Festival and the Best Actor award for Mortensen at the British Independent Film Awards. The film received twelve Genie Award nominations and three Golden Globe Award nominations. Mortensen was nominated for the Academy Award for Best Actor.
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