Seven years with Janosik

“The topicality of the story about Janosik was something that attracted us in the script,” said Agnieszka Holland after the screening of Janosik. “It is a story about lot and fate, not only a fairy tale.” The film by Holland and her daughter, Kasia Adamik will be shown in Poland, Czech Republic and Slovakia from 4 September.


The filmmakers of The True Story Of Janosik (Prawdziwa historia Janosika) met with journalists on 25 August in the Silver Screen Cinema in Warsaw.

“The topicality of this story was something that attracted us most in the script by Eva Borušovičová,” said Agnieszka Holland. “Juro Janosik is a young, charismatic, and rebeling boy, who grows up to make some choices.”

Work over the script has lasted seven years. Slovakian screenwriter started it during her studies, “I thought that the story of Janosik would be a great material for a film,” said Borušovičová. “Working with the script was connected with time-consuming investigation of documents and original texts. Luckily I had a lot of time during my studies, thanks to this the film is based mainly on historical sources, not on a legend.”

Finished script got to Agnieszka Holland and Kasia Adamik who, after some doubts at the beginning, decided to accomplish the project. They started working on the film in fall 2002, but after shoting 35% of the material, one of the main sponsors withdrew. This stopped the work for six years. Only after the involvement of Apple Film Production, a company owned by Dariusz Jabłoński, the film could have been accomplished.

At the conference there were also producers from Slovakia (Rudolf Biermann), and Poland (Violetta Kamińska, Izabela Wójcik, Dariusz Jabłoński), and also actors: Vaclav Jiráček (Janosik), Maja Ostaszewska (Witch Margeta), Małgorzata Zajączkowska (Janosik’s mother), Marek Litewka (father), and Sara Zoe Canner (Barbara).

The actors said that working with two directors was a double portion of ideas and inspirations. Directors mentioned various stories from the film set.

“When we started working with Vaclav (Janosik) he was only at the second year of his studies,” said Kasia Adamik. “That is probably why he agreed on everything we asked without any protests: diving in cold streams a couple of times a day, finger frost-bites, rolling in snow…”

“I just thought that is how a film is made,” said Jiráček

Translated by Monika Miziniak | Edited by Patricia Koza