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VARSAVIA 2018 Industria

REPORT: Warsaw Works in Progress 2018

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- Sei film provenienti da Polonia, Ucraina, Russia ed Estonia sono stati presentati a un pubblico di professionisti del cinema ai Warsaw Industry Days

REPORT: Warsaw Works in Progress 2018
The pitch for I Am Lying Now by Pawel Borowski

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As part of the Warsaw Industry Days (WID) at the 34th Warsaw International Film Festival, this year’s edition of Works in Progress showcased six new films from Eastern Europe. Giving an audience of film professionals, including distributors, festival programmers and sales agents, an exclusive preview of upcoming features – three of which come from Poland, and one film each from Ukraine, Russia and Estonia – the pitching session was held in the Warsaw Cinematheque at the Palace of Culture and Science on 19 October. 

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Mostly in search of international sales, distribution, completion funding or festival programming for their world premieres, the films had a good chance of finding a match after their presentations, opined Małgorzata Dochniak, head of the WID, noting, “It’s been working out in the past few years.”

Supported by the Polish Film Institute, the main partner of the WID, this year’s film selection encompassed a variety of subjects, from a story set on a Ukrainian Navy ship to another set in a park in Japan, the narrative strands of which are interwoven with Japanese traditional Haiku poetry. In Dochniak’s view, this is the “main strength of this year’s programme, as everyone can find something for themselves”.

The first presentation was that of the Ukrainian-Polish movie about the crew of a Ukrainian Navy ship during the Russian invasion of Crimea. In UR11 Cherkasy [+leggi anche:
recensione
trailer
intervista: Tymur Yashchenko
scheda film
]
 by director Timur Yashchenko, the crew is trying to return to port as the crisis begins. They discover that the port has been lost to the invasion but refuse to surrender, as it would go against the navy’s code of honour. UR11 Cherkasy is planned for a 2019 release and is being produced by MKK film service and Intermedia. 

The second film presented was the Polish-Dutch dystopian film noir I Am Lying Now [+leggi anche:
trailer
scheda film
]
, directed by Pawel Borowski (Zero) and produced by Opus Film (Ida [+leggi anche:
recensione
trailer
intervista: Pawel Pawlikowski
intervista: Pawel Pawlikowski
scheda film
]
). The film will explore the concept of fake news through the story of a fictional TV show. Maja Ostaszewska (Body [+leggi anche:
recensione
trailer
intervista: Malgorzata Szumowska
intervista: Malgorzata Szumowska
scheda film
]
), Rafał Maćkowiak (The Sun, the Sun Blinded Me [+leggi anche:
recensione
trailer
intervista: Anka e Wilhelm Sasnal
scheda film
]
) and Agata Buzek (High Life [+leggi anche:
recensione
trailer
intervista: Claire Denis
scheda film
]
) have been cast in the movie.

The Polish big-budget historical battle drama The Legions [+leggi anche:
trailer
scheda film
]
, directed by Dariusz Gajewski (Strange Heaven [+leggi anche:
trailer
scheda film
]
), is scheduled for cinematic release in 2019. Set at the beginning of the 20th century, when Poland is spread across three different countries, it explores the rise of the Polish national consciousness and its part in forming the independently organised Polish Legions. It is being staged by Picaresque.

With a budget of only 3 million PLN (approximately €700,000), Polish first-time director Monika Jordan-Młodzianowska and production company Autograf have finished shooting The Iron Bridge [+leggi anche:
recensione
trailer
intervista: Monika Jordan-Mlodzianowska
scheda film
]
, inspired by the real-life rescue of miners trapped underground. Julia Kijowska (Nina [+leggi anche:
recensione
trailer
scheda film
]
, Via Carpatia [+leggi anche:
recensione
trailer
intervista: Klara Kochańska
scheda film
]
, Strawberry Days [+leggi anche:
trailer
scheda film
]
) and Łukasz Simlat (Fugue [+leggi anche:
recensione
trailer
intervista: Agnieszka Smoczyńska
scheda film
]
, Amok [+leggi anche:
recensione
trailer
scheda film
]
, United States of Love [+leggi anche:
recensione
trailer
intervista: Tomasz Wasilewski
scheda film
]
) star in the film.

An untitled Aleksandr Rastorguyev project (budgeted at €150,000) is being made by several directors in Russia. The Russian documentary filmmaker, who also produced My Friend Boris Nemtsov [+leggi anche:
trailer
scheda film
]
, was killed in South Africa while uncovering a story about a Russian military company. The film, still in the early stages of production (staged by Tvindie Film Production), will be accompanied by a webdoc and is open to finding co-producers. 

The film with the working title Yoyogi Haiku, directed by first-time Estonian director Max Golomidov, explores the Japanese tradition of contemplation in Yoyogi Park in Tokyo. Still in development, the project, which is receiving a development award from the Estonian Film Institute, is being produced by Volia Chajkouskaya, of Volia Films, and Ivo Felt (Scary Mother [+leggi anche:
recensione
trailer
intervista: Ana Urushadze
scheda film
]
, Tangerines [+leggi anche:
recensione
trailer
scheda film
]
), of Allfilm. It is looking for sales agents, distributors, pre-sales and festivals. 

For the second year in a row, the Warsaw Industry Days project CentEast was not funded by Creative Europe. Last year, the organisers therefore focused exclusively on Polish films, and this year, the platform expanded to include other countries. “We are always very happy when the projects return to the festival as feature films [in the official programme],” said Małgorzata Dochniak.

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