In Warsaw will start the next festival of Russian cinema “Sputnik over Poland”. His films of the local public will be impressive landing renowned directors, producers and actors from Russia. Festival director Malgorzata Shlyagovska-Skulskaya told “RG” the joys and the difficulties in the way of Russian cinema to the Polish audience.
Malgorzata Shlyagovska-Skulskaya: This year’s festival will be held in about 30 cities in Poland. In Warsaw, Russian films will be shown in three theaters, including “Cinematheque”, which is located in Warsaw’s famous skyscraper. This year we will show the audience 111 films, 15 of them in the framework of the competition program. The jury, headed by our famous director Waldemar Kshistek the first time there is such a difficult task, because so many of the pictures we have in the competition for the first nine years of its existence has not yet been seen. The names of these pictures speak for themselves. For example, Alexey Fedorchenko bring to Warsaw award two prizes at the “Kinotavr” film “Angels of the revolution”, Ivan Rhythm himself will introduce viewers to the new drama “Rescue”, Vasily Cigars – comedy “Oz,” Andrei Proshkin – “Orleans”. The guest of honor this year’s festival will be the Alexander Sokurov. We invited him for many years, and now, finally, he found the opportunity to come. “Sputnik” will tape its “Francophonie”, and, of course, the audience is waiting for a retrospective of his films. In addition, he will hold a master class for young Polish filmmakers will answer questions from journalists. From wanting to interview him already a long line. And just for the festival from Russia will come about 50 people.
Traditionally, the satellite passes a retrospective of films on specific topics related to Russia. What programs do you present this time?
Malgorzata Shlyagovska-Skulskaya: This year’s theme of the festival is Saint Petersburg. We immerse viewers in an atmosphere of “Venice of the North” because of newsreels with music, documentaries and feature films from St. Petersburg in the lead role, as well as through the photo exhibition and video installation. Of course, no cost and without taking place in the Year of Russian literature. We claim not only feature film adaptation, such as “The End of a Beautiful Era” based on the stories of Sergei Dovlatov, “Sunstroke” Ivan Bunin, who inspired the director Nikita Mikhalkov on the film set, and documentaries such as “Koktebel pebbles” on the Crimean episode in the life poets and writers of the Silver Age. Another retrospective devoted to the 70th anniversary of the Victory. Here, viewers are waiting for the legendary tape Soviet times, such as “The Cranes Are Flying” Mikhail Kalatozov, “Come and See” by Elem Klimov and modern, such as the Russian-Ukrainian Sergei Mokritskiy painting “The Battle of Sevastopol”.
Pani Malgorzata no secret Now that Poland is not easy to break with the Russian projects, even in the field of culture. What difficulties did you face during the preparation of “Sputnik”?
Malgorzata Shlyagovska-Skulskaya: First of all, a shortage of funds. This year we have received from all over the country about fifty applications for the festival, but unfortunately, for financial reasons, we can not take the Russian cinema wherever we are invited. And I would like to have that opportunity. Our festival in Poland supports including the Ministry of Culture and the head of the Polish Senate Bogdan Borusewicz, the city of Warsaw, the Russian side helps us Ministry of Culture of the Russian Federation, the Russian-Polish Center of dialogue and consensus, a very important support is provided by the new Russian ambassador to Poland, Sergey Andreev, which is well-versed in the situation and understand that the organization of the Russian Film Festival in Poland in the present circumstances – not an easy task. But we lack a permanent sponsor – a large company that would help us to survive for a year, because the festival – this is not only in themselves screenings, it’s a great organizational work of skilled people for its preparation. Our festival enthusiasts do, but they, too, need to make a living. We used to have regular partners among Russian firms, but, unfortunately, in recent years, many of them have lost interest in the “satellite”. I sent the application, wherever you can, but so far no one is interested in our festival – the largest show of Russian cinema in the world and the most serious channel of communication between Russia and Poland.
In the past year, we met at the ceremony the opening of the 8th “Sputnik” and you told me to prepare the festival is becoming harder and, most likely, it will be the last. What made you change your mind?
Malgorzata Shlyagovska-Skulskaya: First of all, I can not let the audience. “Sputnik” has been around for nine years, during which time people are accustomed to the fact that in the autumn, they have the opportunity to watch the best Russian films. They are waiting for this. I regularly receive from the most loyal viewers letter about what movies they would like to see this year. We cinemas rarely show contemporary Russian cinema. But lovers of Russian culture and cinema in Poland very much, and, fortunately, over the years the situation has not changed. Last year, the festival is only in Warsaw, attended by over 20 thousand people, but across the country – twice. I will say this: I love what I do, and all the while continuing to hope that it will be easier. Next year will be the first round anniversary “Sputnik” – 10 years. I hope he will.
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