If you weren’t alive in 1979, then you probably have no idea who Vlada Vasiljevic is. But for those who know of this guy’s back-story, then you either consider him as crazed lunatic or a cult hero and nothing in between.
It’s also fitting that on the 30th anniversary of Vasiljevic’s exploits, a new film about the man people have come to know as ‘the Belgrade Phantom’ was recently premiered in Amsterdam.
Vasiljevic’s rise to fame – or infamy – started after he stole a white 1979 Porsche 911 and spent the next ten days running all over the streets of Serbia at a time when the country was still under communist rule.
After stealing the 911, Vasiljevic earned a lot of support from thousands of people for his buccaneering ways. Not content with the white 911 Targa he stole, Vasiljevic decided to steal more white Porsches and taunt the police over the radio as he did them. In the end, he was eventually arrested after a couple of people snitched on him, after which he was sentenced to five years in prison. Vlada Vasiljevic was killed during the 80s after crashing his car into a trailer. And no, he wasn’t riding a Porsche when he lost his life.
There’s no word yet as to when – or if – the Belgrade Phantom is going to be shown here in the US, but if you happen to be in Amsterdam, then you can check it out at the International Documentary Film Festival.