The Spiritual Warrior | Documentary

Entirely produced by Vita Pictura, Spiritual Warrior is an original feature documentary about kickboxer Maxim Vorovski who went from having problems with law in his younger years to becoming one of the best fighters in Estonia. We live through Maxim’s inner battle, capturing his struggle for hope and energy to exit the ring with dignity. “The Spiritual Warrior” is a poignant tale of resilience, tracing Maxim’s journey from triumph to despair and his quest for redemption beyond the ring.

Idea development and pre-production

The film’s idea was developed at Vita Pictura in 2015. In the beginning, our team just filmed individual fights at local championships in which Maxim participated. Directors Georgius Misjura and Aleksei Kulikov became interested in Maxim’s character and story. After this, a decision was made together with the producer of the film Jana Churkina, to pitch the project to the Estonian Film Institute and the Cultural Endowment of Estonia for additional film funding. Having received a positive reply from two of the largest culture-supporting organizations in the country helped us to start working on the film on a bigger scale.

Having understood the story trajectory and financial capabilities, the directors started working on the script with the screenwriter Lauri Lippmaa. With a great deal of gripping fights in our possession, we embarked on the exhilarating journey of deciphering the film’s deeper meaning while simultaneously crafting the twisted threads of our script.


Since 2015, Vita Pictura has crafted aftermovies for the Xplosion boxing event series. Beginning in 2015, we turned our lenses towards the contests of the Number One Fight Show, enriching our archives of Maxim’s fights. Envisioning the potential of harnessing this cinematic treasure trove for a compelling documentary, we boldly expanded our cadre of cameras and camera operators, thus guaranteeing access to the intensity of Maxim’s encounters.

In addition to Maxim, we wanted to interview the people who directly influenced him to become a fighter, including the coaches, fighting event organizers, his opponents, family, and relatives, including his sparring partner Nieky Holzken, The League fighting events organizer Kevin Renno, coaches Mosa Chatchawan and Juri Solovjev, KOK Fights organizer Donatas Simanaitis, and sparring partner and organizer of the Xplosion fighting events Mirkko Moisar.

During the shooting process, the team understood one crucial conflict in the kickboxing world – in order to become a successful and well-known fighter, one also needs to be a showman. A fighter can participate in big championships where one needs to be a showman, or on the contrary, join in smaller fights where one risks their health for a small amount of money, not enough to cover the expenses of fixing the injuries. This is something Maxim is struggling with; hence, a metaphor of Maxim being underwater in an empty audience hall was chosen to portray his psychological inner state. 


Our in-house post-production team, Georgius Misjura, Lev Kovalenko, Nikita Kurashov, Grete-Elisabeth Lauri, and Aleksei Sharapanjuk, handled the whole process, including selecting the materials to use in the film, color correction, and sound mixing. Editing the film took around five years due to the pandemic, lack of funding, changes in Maxim Vorovski’s life, and additional filming. The new producer, Ervin Roots, joined the team at the final stages of post-production and sped up the film’s distribution.


In the industry, the marketing budget often surpasses the film’s production budget. With our film, no additional investments were made in marketing; hence, the social media manager Anastasia Zazhitskaya and co-producer Roman Pototski used the already proven method of marketing on social media, which has shown promising organically obtained results. Public relations manager Dagmar Reinolt organized the film’s media coverage. 

Our team produced and self-financed all of the film’s marketing materials, including trailers, teasers, posters, and social media clips for various platforms. Preparation of the marketing materials started well before our team finished editing the documentary, saving our team time and making the marketing work easier. 

Screening in cinemas

The film’s first screening is on May 10, 2024, at Apollo Cinemas, Estonia’s largest cinema operator and entertainment company with cinemas nationwide. Vita Pictura took over the distribution of the film.

Other Cases