Oscar Actors: Bakalova, Maria (Borat Subsequent Moviefilm)–Background, Career, Awards

Maria Bakalova (Bulgarian: born June 4, 1996) is a Bulgarian actress, who gained international recognition for her role as Tutar Sagdiyev in the 2020 mockumentary Borat Subsequent Moviefilm, for which she won Critics’ Choice Movie Award for Best Supporting Actress and earned nominations at the Academy Awards, the BAFTA Film Awards, the Golden Globe Awards, and the Screen Actors Guild Awards.

Bakalova is the first Bulgarian to be nominated for these awards.

Bakalova was born in Burgas. She began singing lessons and playing the flute around age six.

Bakalova majored in drama theater at the National School of Arts in Burgas. She majored in drama at the Krastyo Sarafov National Academy for Theatre and Film Arts in Sofia, graduating in 2019.

Bakalova was cast as Tutar Sagdiyev in the mockumentary Borat Subsequent Moviefilm, the daughter of fictional Kazakh reporter Borat Sagdiyev.

Fellow Bulgarian Julian Kostov connected her with casting director Nancy Bishop for the role.

Critics have praised Bakalova’s performance: The film’s fantastic find, Maria Bakalova, every bit Sacha Baron Cohen’s on-screen equal, is who, and what, most people will be talking about. Indeed, she portrayed her character’s journey with madcap energy and touching conviction.

For her performance, Maria Bakalova, only 24, received several awards, including nominations for an Academy Award, BAFTA Award, Screen Actors Guild Award and Golden Globe Award, all for Best Actress in a Supporting Role. She is the first Bulgarian actress to be nominated for these awards.

In November 2020, Bakalova had signed with Creative Artists Agency.


2017 XIIa Milena Magdalena Ralcheva Film debut
2018 Angels Angela Lachezar Petrov
2018 Transgression [bg] Yana Val Todorov
2019 Due to Unforeseen Circumstances Girl in Taxi Peter Chiviyski2019 Dream_Girl Dream_Girl Peter Chiviyski
2019 The Father Valentina
Kristina Grozeva
Petar Valchanov

2020 Last Call Alexandra Ivaylo Penchev
2020 Borat Subsequent Moviefilm Tutar Sagdiyev Jason Woliner

TBA The Bubble Judd Apatow Filming