„Wall of shadows” won the Bergen Film Festival

Co-financed by the Polish Film Institute the latest film by Eliza Kubarska and Monika Braid – „Wall of shadows” awarded for the best documentary at the International Film Festival in Bergen. It had its world premiere at the Hot Docs festival in Toronto, but it was screened for the first time in Poland during the 17th edition of the Millennium Docs Against Gravity festival. It is a universal story about a clash of two cultures. The action takes place at the foot of the Himalayas, reaching almost 8,000 meters Kumbhakarna, also known as Jannu. For Western climbers it is one of the most difficult mountains in the world and a dream place to „conquer”, but for Nepalese Sherpas – one of the last holy mountains. According to local beliefs, its summit is inhabited by gods and people are not allowed to enter their area. However, the illiterate Nada decides to take part in the expedition. For 20 years he has been risking his life as a porter at high altitudes, hanging ropes on eight-thousanders. Now he wants to earn money for school for his youngest son – teenage Dawa – and thus save him from the dangerous work of a Himalayan porter. However, participating in an expedition to the sacred mountain is a taboo break.

Polish animation awarded in Cannes

Animation co-financed by the Polish Film Institute „My fat arse and I” directed by Yelyzaveta Pysmak won the second prize in the Cannes section – Cinéfondation 2020. Earlier this picture by student from the Film School in Łódź, received the Audience Award at the 36th Warsaw Film Festival. First prize of the 23rd Cannes Cinéfondation goes to „Catdog” directed by Ashmita Guha Neogi from India and joint third prize go to „Contraindications” directed by Lucia Chicos from Romania and „I want to return return return” directed by Elsa Rosengren from Germany. The winners will receive a €15,000 grant for the First Prize, €11,250 for the Second and €7,500 for the Third. The prizes have been awarded on the stage of the Grand Théâtre Lumière as part of „Cannes 2020 Special” by the members of jury comprised of Damien Bonnard, Rachid Bouchareb, Claire Burger, Charles Gillibert, Dea Kulumbegashvili and Céline Sallette.

13 projects at the US in Progress in Wroclaw

Nine American projects in post-production and four Polish projects in the development stage have been selected to participate in the US in Progress forum. The tenth edition of the co-production forum will be held online from November 11th to 13th 2020, as a part of the 11th edition of the American Film Festival in Wroclaw. US in Progress is organized with the support of The Polish Film Institute. The event aims to facilitate professional networking among European and Polish film professionals and independent filmmakers from the United States. Leading Polish sound and image studios provide in-kind awards of post-production service packages for the American projects: Coloroffon, Fixafilm, Orka, Maciej Zielinski and Soundflower Studio.

The nationwide social campaign „Cinema means emotions” has been launched

On September 4, the social campaign „Cinema means emotions” was launched in Poland. As part of the project, which aims to encourage people to return to cinemas, viewers can see emotional spots featuring film stars: Joanna Kulig and Marcin Dorociński, in which actors remind about the unique role of cinema in our lives. The campaign, under the patronage of the Polish Film Institute, is a joint initiative of the cinema chains: Cinema City, Helios, Multikino, as well as studio and local cinemas from all over Poland. Support was also provided by the Ministry of Culture and National Heritage, the Polish Producers’ Guild and the National Chamber of Audiovisual Producers. The entire Polish industry united in the campaign „Cinema means emotions”, which began on September 4 in cinemas, television and the Internet to remind us of the important role that cinema plays in our lives. This is a unique initiative: for the first time in history, all Polish cinemas unite in a joint action. The cinema operators  involved in the campaign include: Cinema City, Helios, Multikino and cinemas associated with the Network of Studio and Local Cinemas all over Poland. The project is co-financed by the Polish Film Institute and the Ministry of Culture and National Heritage. The campaign is also supported by the Polish Producers Guild and the Polish Audiovisual Producers Chamber of Commerce.

Polish films start their pre-Oscar promotion with the support of the Polish Film Institute

The Polish Film Institute will provide promotional support to three Polish productions which will compete for the Academy Awards. In addition to „Never gonna snow again” by Małgorzata Szumowska and Michał Englert, two other films will compete for the nomination: „Mr Jones” by Agnieszka Holland and „Kill It and Leave This Town” by Mariusz Wilczyński. All films are co-financed by the Polish Film Institute. The image by Małgorzata Szumowska and Michał Englert „Never gonna snow again” is a Polish candidate for an Oscar in the Best International Feature category. On the other hand, Agnieszka Holland’s film „Mr Jones”, awarded with the Golden Lions at the Polish Film Festival in Gdynia, was submitted in the competition in the Best Film category. The third production is the film „Kill It and Leave This Town” awarded at the festival in Annecy, directed by Mariusz Wilczyński, who will fight for  a nomination in the Best Animated Feature category. Shortlist of candidates will be announced on February 9, 2021.

„Never gonna snow again” picked as Polish Oscar entry

Co-financed by the Polish Film Institutepicture „Never gonna snow again” directed by Małgorzata Szumowska and Michał Englerthas been picked as Poland’s candidate for the best international feature film at the American Academy Awards. This decision by the Polish Oscar’s Commission presided by Jan A.P. Kaczmarek was announced on August 10th at a press conference in Warsaw. The film is set to premiere at this year’s Main Competition of the Venice Film Festival. It has also been officially selected to Telluride Film Festival, one of the most important film festivals in the USA.

Polish representatives at the Toronto Festival

The film „Quo vadis, Aida?”, produced by Ewa Puszczyńska  and the Indian film „The Disciple” with cinematography by Michał Sobociński, were among the 50 productions in the official program of the 45th Toronto International Film Festival. The event will be held on September 10-19 in a changed formula. Due to the coronavirus pandemic, traditional screenings (only during the first five days of the event) with a limited number of viewers will be held alongside drive-in screenings, digital screenings, virtual red carpets and remote conferences.

New film by Piotr Domalewski at the festival in San Sebastian

„I never cry”, the newest and second feature-length film by Piotr Domalewski, will take part in this year’s 68th San Sebastian International Film Festival. It will be shown in the Kutxabank-New Directors Award section. The film received a grant from the Polish Film Institute. The Spanish festival will be held on September 18-26. „I never cry” is included in section which presents debuts and second feature-length films by distinguished  artists. Its premiere is scheduled for September 25. Previously, it was shown as part of the Marche du Film in Cannes, as well as in the Works in Progress program in Karlovy Vary.

Changes to the 45th PFF: new date, new competition

The next Polish Film Festival in Gdynia will take place in December 2020 and will present the latest Polish films in three competition sections – decided the Organizing Committee of the Polish Film Festival. The 45th Polish  Film Festival will be held in Gdynia on December 8-12, 2020. This was the decision of the Organizing Committee at the meeting held on August 5, 2020, adopting the new regulations of the Polish  Film Festival.

„Kill it and leave this town” at the Ottawa and Melbourne festivals

The animated film „Kill it and leave this town” by Mariusz Wilczyński was included in the competition of the International Animation Festival in Ottawa and the International Film Festival in Melbourne. The picture is co-financed by the Polish Film Institute. Mariusz Wilczyński’s full-length directorial debut is an autobiographical impression, a reminiscence of childhood images, in which the memories of his deceased parents and his hometown of Łódź come alive. Voices in the animation are given, among others, by  Krystyna Janda, Andrzej Chyra, Maja Ostaszewska and Małgorzata Kożuchowska.

Polish film in the International Competition at the Venice Festival

The film by Małgorzata Szumowska and Michał Englert „Never gonna snow again” was included in the International Competition of the Venice Film Festival. This year’s edition of the event will feature a record number of productions (9) with the participation of Poles. Most of them were co-financed by the Polish Film Institute. „Never gonna snow again” is the first Polish film in five years in the Main Competition of the Venice festival. 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.

We know the Polish Days 2020 program

Six completed films, eight as part of the „Works in Progress” presentation and 10 projects in the development stage appear in the Polish Days 2020 program. This is one of the most important industry events in Poland. This year’s edition of the event, co-organized by the Polish Film Institute, will take place online from July 27-29. Although the New Horizons festival, which organizes Polish Days, has been moved to November 2020, the July edition, thanks to the online platform, will be attended by about 100 guests from abroad, including selectors of many international festivals, sales agents, distributors and film producers.

The 45th Polish Film Festival in Gdynia will be held in November

Meeting the expectations of the film community, on July 15, 2020 the Organizational Committee of the Polish Film Festival unanimously decided to organize the 45th Polish Film Festival in Gdynia this year. The hybrid event will take place on November 9-14, 2020. At the same time, the Organizational Committee asked the Director of the Polish Film Festival to present the regulations containing a substitute formula for the Polish Film Festival by August 3, 2020.

Polish document appreciated in New Zealand

The film „Long Day Tomorrow” by Paweł Wysoczański received a special jury award at the Doc Edge International Documentary Film Festival in New Zealand. He was awarded for „beautiful composition and exceptional personal commitment”. The film was co-financed by the Polish Film Institute. „Paweł Wysoczański’s film deserves a special mention. Talking about Dr. Helena Pyz and her 30 years of work at the leprosy treatment center and their children, the film is distinguished by a beautiful composition and exceptional personal commitment. Wysoczański gives an example of the art of documentary cinema, a clear narrative and a humanitarian message,” it was written in the justification of the award in the category for international directors.

„Kill It and Leave This Town” honored in Annecy

The film „Kill It and Leave This Town” received a jury award in the main competition of the 44th International Animation Film Festival in Annecy. The film directed by Mariusz Wilczyński is co-financed by the Polish Film Institute. The French online event took part between 15 till 30 of June. The world premiere of „Kill It and Leave This Town” took place in the Encounters competition at the 70th International Film Festival in Berlin. The film is the full-length directorial debut of Mariusz Wilczyński. Voices in the animation are given by, among others Krystyna Janda, Andrzej Chyra, Maja Ostaszewska and Małgorzata Kożuchowska.

Polish animation in the Cinéfondation Cannes section

The organizers of the Cannes festival announced a list of films that qualified for the Cinéfondation 2020 section. Among 17 productions there was the Polish animation entitled „My fat arse and I”  directed by Yelyzaveta Pysmak from the Film School in Łódź. The Cinéfondation section has been presenting short films from film schools around the world since 1998. This year, the selection committee selected 17 films (13 stories and 4 animations) from 1952 entries. They come from countries such as Israel, Great Britain, Argentina, Hungary, Romania, India, Switzerland, the United States, South Korea, France, Poland, Portugal, Germany and Slovenia. Film screenings in the competition and the jury review will be held this autumn in Cannes.

New Rector of the Film School in Łódź

Dr hab. Milenia Fiedler was elected the new Rector of The Leon Schiller National Higher School of Film, Television and Theatre in Łódź for the term 2020-2024. She will replace prof. Mariusz Grzegorzek and take up her function on 1 September. Announcement from the University Electoral Commission of July 6, 2020.

„Lesson of love” in the New Zealand festival program

The film „Lesson of love” directed by Małgorzata Goliszewska and Kasia Mateja was included in the New Zealand International Film Festival program in the Becoming section. This year’s event will take place from July 24 to August 2. The picture is co-financed by the Polish Film Institute. 79 full-length and seven short films from 41 countries were included in the New Zealand International Film Festival program. All films will be presented online, and 27 of them additionally at screenings in cinema halls in eight cities, including Auckland, Wellington, Christchurch and Dunedin. The festival in New Zealand also for the first time started cooperation with European Film Promotion’s Europe!: Voices Of Women In Film initiative, whose partner has been Sydney Film Festival for the last four years.

Polish presence at Marché du Film

Screenings, discussion panels and the PFI virtual stand - this is the Polish presence at the Marché du Film in Cannes, which will last online until June 26.

Five Polish films in The Goes to Cannes

New Horizons' Polish Days Goes to Cannes 2020 program has announced their selection. Among the Polish films at various stages of production (works-in-progress) selected for this year's edition, five titles will be presented. They are: „Horse Tail”, „The Last Mission”, „Everyone Has a Summer”, „Moths” and „WIKA!” - all co-financed by the Polish Film Institute.

Cinemas can operate from June 6

Cinemas can operate from June 6, after meeting the appropriate conditions - announced the Deputy Prime Minister, Minister of Culture and National Heritage prof. Piotr Gliński. Earlier, from May 18, outdoor and drive in cinemas have been already allowed to operate.