New East Digital Archive

Did a bear really officiate a Russian wedding?

Did a bear really officiate a Russian wedding?
(Image: Caters News Agency / Facebook)

3 November 2016

Probably not. But many were tempted to believe that Stepan the bear did officiate the wedding of a Moscow couple.

Earlier this week, Russian media outlets published photos of lovebirds Denis and Nelya together with Stepan, which can be traced back to the Caters News Agency and photographer Olga Barantseva.

Buzzfeed delved into the issue, but experienced great difficulty in getting any comment from the photographer or the bear’s representatives. Their research on social media suggests that the photos published simply formed part of a photo shoot, rather than a real wedding.

This is far from the first time Stepan has been in the limelight, however. The bear has appeared in viral videos, showing him interacting with a (human) family – officiating a wedding might not be too far beyond his reach.

Check out the full report here.