Oscar Winners Working on Chopin Project
Marek Skrobecki and Krzysztof Ptak. Photo by Marcin Kułakowski, Polish Film Institute
At a press conference held at Warsaw’s Kultura cinema, the creators of the extraordinary Project Chopin talked about what is behind this unique film and why they decided to undertake such a difficult venture.
„The introduction of 3D is a revolution on par with the launch of the sound era in film. In the field of animation, we are pioneers,” said Marek Skrobecki, one of the most acclaimed Polish animation filmmakers and production designer for Project Chopin. He admitted that the task at hand was not easy: „Chopin’s music is not illustratory, which is why preparing images to complement it is very difficult. It is an incredible challenge, but I am trying to be worthy of illustrating the music of Chopin.”
Project Chopin is an international co-production, produced by BreakThru Films (producer of the Academy Award-winning Peter & the Wolf). Directed by Martin Clapp, Adam Wyrwas (responsible for animation) and Marek Skrobecki, this 85-minute long animation is the largest such project in Europe this year. The director of photography will be Krzysztof Ptak, while the music of Chopin will be performed by Lang Lang, one of the world’s most prominent pianists.
The budget of the entire project, consisting of a feature-length animated film and 14 animated shorts, is set at 18 million PLN. The Polish Film Institute granted 2 million PLN to the project, the largest amount in its history to go to an animation film.
“Project Chopin is important not only to the history of Polish cinema, but to Polish culture in general. It is a universal and innovative project that establishes new standards,” explained Agnieszka Odorowicz, the general director of the Polish Film Institute. She also talked about the origins of the idea behind this project: “At the ReAnimacja film festival, the minister of culture Bogdan Zdrojewski, Waldemar Dąbrowski and I offered this idea to the filmmakers present here today, who were eager to take on this venture.”
It must be said that these are filmmakers of the greatest caliber. Their previous project was the Academy Award-winning Peter & the Wolf. “While working on Peter & the Wolf we were able to put together an incredible crew. I thought it was time to take a step forward. This step will be Project Chopin, only the world’s second film to be made using stereoscopic technology,” said Hugh Welchman, founder and manager of BreakThru Films.
Project Chopin will be made under the patronage of the Ministry of Culture and National Heritage and the office responsible for preparation of Chopin 2010. The project will be co-produced by TVP S.A., CANAL+, the city of Łódź, Storm Studio (Norway) and Denis Friedman Productions (France). The film is set to premiere in late August or early September 2010.
Translated by Karolina Kołtun