Teddy Award for "In the Name Of..."
Andrzej Chyra in W imię… (In the Name Of…)
On February 15, the 27th Teddy Awards for films that focus on LGBT issues were presented at the 63rd Berlin International Film Festival. The Best Film award and the award of the Siegessäule magazine readers went to Polish film W imię… (In the Name Of…) by Małgorzata Szumowska.
Małgorzata Szumowska Among Winners
This year’s Teddy Awards jury members were Martha Arredondo, Benoît Arnulf, Dilcia Barrera, Katja Briesemeister, Ljosha Chashchyn, Pavel Cortés, Johanna Hakanen, Sophie Lin, and Gerardo Pérez Meliá. The creators of W imię… (In the Name Of…) joined the ranks of previous Teddy Award winners, which include director François Ozon, actress Tilda Swinton, and actor John Hurt. The first Teddy Awards went to Pedro Almodóvar for Love of Desire and to Gus Van Sant for his short film Five Ways to Kill Yourself and My New Friend.
“The subject of this film, I think, is the loneliness of the people of the Church – their intimate loneliness […]. I did not try to depict any single person, I did not want to imitate anyone […]. I tried to see what was unique about my character,” said Andrzej Chyra in a recent interview.
Excellent Reception of the Film in Berlin
On February 13, the prestigious magazine “The Hollywood Reporter” published an interview with Małgorzata Szumowska, where she discussed the support she received from the Polish Film Institute and the screenwriting process with actors Andrzej Chyra and Mateusz Kościukiewicz in mind. Szumowska also spoke of her cooperation with Michał Englert and the film’s Polish release, which is scheduled for October. The text of this interview is available here.
After the film’s Main Competition screening, Polish and international press featured a number of positive reviews of W imię… (In the Name Of…). According to Anna Bielak, the reviewer for Interia.pl, Szumowska brings a very real problem to the public’s attention. “She examines it from an interesting perspective and notices the authentic feel of certain emotions”.
Joseph Walsh of Grolsch Film Works praises Małgorzata Szumowska for her unusual approach to the issues addressed in her film. In his words, In the Name Of… “should be appreciated for the approach the director has brought to the subject matter. […] Perhaps the best quality of Szumowska’s brave and engaging drama is the way she has diverted attention away from the often documented accounts of paedophile priests to focus on a dramatically intriguing idea still concerning the catholic Church – what if a man is slave to two masters: God and his sexuality? […]”
“Undeterred Malgoska Szumowska, director of W imię… (In the Name Of…) broaches with a carefully constructed, simple yet powerful film that explores the repressed sexual identity of Adam (Andrzej Chyra) […],” writes Ben Jones on the Peanut Butter Thoughts website.
Film Co-Financed by the Polish Film Institute
Małgorzata Szumowska’s latest feature is her third full-length feature film to screen at Berlinale. In the Name Of… was co-financed by the Polish Film Institute. The film tells the contemporary story of a priest who launches a help centre for troubled youths in a small parish. The good priest is well-liked by his congregation, yet he keeps the details of his complicated past a secret.
The focus of the 27th edition of the Teddy Awards was on the topic “Celebrate Queer Icons! – This is Our Family Album”.
Further details about the Teddy Awards available at: news.teddyaward.tv.
Translated by Karolina Kołtun