Panel with filmmakers of „Never Gonna Snow Again”

Co-financed by the Polish Film Institute „Never Gonna Snow Again” was presented during Deadline Virtual Screening Series. After that there was a discussion with filmmakers: Malgorzata Szumowska and Michal Englert. Their movie is Poland’s entry for this year’s Oscar in the Best International Feature Film category.

Filmmaking duo Malgorzata Szumowska and Michal Englert revealed in conversation with Tom Grater that the main character (in that role – Alec Utgoff) of „Never Gonna Snow Again” was inspired by a masseur friend of theirs. They decided to use this personality in the story of their film. Szumowska and Englert’s background growing up in Poland under Soviet rule, and also in relatively close proximity to the Chernobyl nuclear disaster, also influenced the project.

They also admitted that they were attempting to make a feature that called back to the „metaphysical, spiritual films of the past” but with added black humor. „We knew it was risky to make a film that is so full of poetry, and is enigmatic. We are happy the story works on some types of people,” says Szumowska.

Watch the video from Deadline’s conversation with Malgorzata Szumowska and Michal Englert

Festivals in Venice and Toronto

The film had its premiere at the Main Competition of the Venice Film Festival. It has also been presented during market screenings at the TIFF Industry, was officially selected to the Telluride Film Festival, the EnergaCAMERIMAGE and the Polish Film Festival in Gdynia.

The image by the Szumowska-Englert duo was based on their shared script. The cast includes: Alec Utgoff, Maja Ostaszewska, Agata Kulesza, Weronika Rosati, Katarzyna Figura, Andrzej Chyra, Łukasz Simlat and Krzysztof Czeczot.

Plot and cast

One foggy morning in the city appears HE – an attractive man from a true, exotic east. Żenia, because that is his name, has a gift. His hands heal, and his eyes look into the souls of single women. The man works as a masseur in a wealthy estate near the city. Working for people separated by a wall from the „worse” world, he learns about their stories and personal dramas. Soon Zenia’s remarkable abilities will change the lives of each of them.

Michał Englert is responsible for cinematography of the film, for editing: Jarosław Kamiński and Agata Cierniak, for sound: Kacper Habisiak, Marcin Kasiński and Marcin Jachyra. Production was managed by: Dagmara Bagnecka and Stefaan Schieder. The set design was prepared by Jagna Janicka, costumes – Katarzyna Lewińska, make-up – Waldemar Pokromski. The producers are: Agnieszka Wasiak and Mariusz Włodarski from Lava Films, Viola Fügen and Michael Weber from Match Factory Productions, as well as  Małgorzata Szumowska and Michał Englert, and the co-producers are: Mazovia and Warsaw Film Fund, Kino Świat, DI-Factory, Bayerischer Rundfunk in cooperation with Arte.