Maria Bakalova

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Oscar-Nominated Actress

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Maria Bakalova: Biography at a Glance

  • Maria Bakalova is a Bulgarian actress best known for her role as “Tutar Sagdiyev” in the mockumentary Borat Subsequent Moviefilm.
  • Her performance made her the first Bulgarian to receive an Academy Award Best Supporting Actress Nomination, a Golden Globe Award Best Actress Nomination, and a SAG Award Best Supporting Actress Nomination.
  • Maria can next be seen as “Cosmo the SpaceDog” in the highly anticipated third installment of Marvel’s Guardians of The Galaxy.
  • Since her international breakthrough, she has been a part of several American productions including Judd Apatow's The Bubble, the A24 slasher film Bodies Bodies Bodies, and can be seen in Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 3.
  • Other film credits include TransgressionThe FatherLast Call, and Women Do Cry.


Academy Award and Golden Globe nominee Maria Bakalova is a star on the rise who was named one of Variety’s 10 Actors to Watch. She is best known for her breakout performance as ‘Tutar’ in Borat Subsequent Moviefilm, for which she became the first Bulgarian nominated for the Academy Award for Best Supporting Actress and the Golden Globe for Best Actress, as well as the first to be nominated for the SAG Award for Best Supporting Actress. 

Maria will soon appear as “Cosmo the SpaceDog” in the highly anticipated third installment of Marvel’s Guardians of The Galaxy. She most recently starred opposite Amandla Stenberg, Rachel Sennot, and Pete Davidson in A24’s hit horror comedy Bodies Bodies Bodies, which was nominated for two Independent Spirit Awards. She also starred opposite Pedro Pascal in Judd Apatow’s star-studded Netflix feature, The Bubble, and in the independent feature The Honeymoon, the latter of which she also produced.

Maria recently shot Sofia Coppola’s independent feature Fairyland, which premiered at the 2023 Sundance Film Festival. This past year she also shot Jerry Seinfeld’s star-studded Netflix feature Unfrosted, Madeleine Sackler’s independent feature O Horizon, Hala Matar’s independent feature Electra, Peter Valchanov and Kristina Grozeva’s independent feature Triumph, and Martin Campbell’s independent feature Dirty Angels. Maria will soon begin production on Mikael Salomon’s spy thriller Bird’s Eye for Aloe Entertainment, and Tim Sutton’s Floodplain opposite Ben Foster and Justice Smith for Topic Studios. Her upcoming filming schedule also includes Rebekah Fortune’s Learning To Breathe Underwater and Kieron Hawkes’ independent feature Branded, based on the New Yorker article “The Brand” by New York Times bestselling author David Grann.

She began her career in Bulgaria with a series of short films and studied at the National School of Arts in Burgas, majoring in acting for drama theater. She later studied at the National Academy for Theatre and Film Arts in Sofia. Her earlier films include Maria playing the critical role of the mother “Valentina” in The Father, which won the Grand Prix Crystal Globe award at the renowned 54th Karlovy Vary Film Festival. The film has received outstanding reviews by major US and European film critic publications, such as The Hollywood Reporter, Variety, lndieWire, CineEuropa, Screen Daily, to name just a few.

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