"Korespondent Bryan" Film Premiere
Korespondent Bryan (Correspondent Bryan) will have its gala premiere at Warsaw’s National Opera Theatre on September 1. This film was made by Eugeniusz Starky thanks to Samuel Bryan, the son of Julien Bryan, and in co-operation with the Steven Spielberg Foundation and the Holocaust Museum in New York. The film will also be broadcast nationally on TVP on Wednesday night.
Eugeniusz Starky’s film is based solely on footage shot in Warsaw in 1939 by Julien Hequembourg Bryan. This American filmmaker and photographer documented life in Poland, the Soviet Union and Nazi Germany between 1935 and 1939. Following the outbreak of the Second World War, he arrived in Warsaw, where he shot a number of films documenting the city under siege, and is said to be the only foreign correspondent in the Polish capital at the time. Bryan also took the first colour photographs of wartime Warsaw.
Thanks to Julien Bryan, who managed to smuggle his materials out of Poland, images of the inferno of war in Warsaw were seen by millions of viewers around the world, and helped to uncover Hitler’s lies.
In the words of the makers of Korespondent Bryan: “The footage shot by Julien Bryan is a unique documentary, full of historic truth watched without subjective commentary; it depicts the patriotic heroism of the Warsaw community through the eyes of an individual entangled in wartime reality. The film shows how German propaganda tried to mislead public opinion abroad and draw attention away from the crimes against civilians in Poland. As a result of this, neither Western Europe nor the United States were aware of the scope of these atrocities. Bryan’s films helped open America’s eyes.”
Korespondent Bryan also features never-before-seen footage, mostly from US archives, where some of these materials spent over 70 years. The Korespondent Bryan project received wide support from war veteran organizations in Poland and abroad. History consultants on Korespondent Bryan included: historian Andrzej Krzysztof Kunert; Zygmunt Walkowski – expert on interpreting photos of Warsaw in the days of the occupation and Warsaw Uprising; and Samuel Bryan – son of Julien Bryan, historian, and documentary filmmaker.
Korespondent Bryan was made under honorary patronage of the late President of Poland Lech Kaczyński, President of the European Parliament Jerzy Buzek, Mayor of Warsaw Hanna Gronkiewicz-Waltz, Marshall of the Mazowieckie Voivodship Adam Struzik, and United States Ambassador to Poland Lee Feinstein.
The film was made in co-production between Poland and the United States.
Translated by Karolina Kołtun