Festival success of our student films in 2018
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18. 12. 2018. Department

The year 2018 has been very successful for student films. Nearly a hundred films have been presented at over 400 international film festivals around the world winning in total nearly 100 prizes!

From “Pussy” to “Bless you”

Last year, the record of presence at festivals among all Polish short animations beat „Cipka” ("Pussy") by Renata Gąsiorowska. Then, the film produced by or school was presented at 177 film events! 2018 has still noted a high interest in the film, which resulted in its presentation at 24 more festivals. This year, however, the chair of the school’s leader has been taken by the animated film, “Bless you” by Paulina Ziółkowska. A funny animation, which captivates with its aesthetics, with a sneeze as a starting point for a short plot seduced the programmers working at over 50 film festivals. “Bless you” has been awarded among others at Berlinale, Animator, Dwa Brzegi . The second half of the year is the time of film’s success at international festivals, Animafest in Zagreb, PRIMANIMA World Festival of First Animations, “Bilbao European School Zinema Festival”, “BogoShorts Festival” in Columbia, and finally a nomination to the prestigious “European Animation Awards” in Lille in the category “Best European Student Animated Film”.

Marta Magnuska’s animated film, “Inny” ("Other") about the essence of perceiving the figure of a "stranger" has also become a well-received festival film. It was shortlisted for BAFTA Students Film Awards, presented in the “Cinefondation” section at Cannes and equally prestigious for animated films Annecy Film Festival. In total, the film has been screened at 35 festivals in Poland and abroad. “Kwadratura koła” ("Squaring the Cirlce”) by Karolina Specht should also be included in the animated films conquering the festival selections. The film, which tells an abstract story of an impossible feeling has been presented at 25 film festivals, winning among others the Grand Prix of the “Animator” Festival in Poznań and a distinction at the “Kamera Akcja Film Critics Festival”. It is also worth mentioning that as many as 16 of the above-mentioned presentations took place at international festivals including the prestigious Annecy Festival at the forefront. The top of the list of the most popular animated films closes Karina Paciorkowska’s „Nie masz dystansu” (“You Are Overreacting”), which was screened at 14 festivals.
„Drżenia” (“Tremors”) number one on the list of fiction films, and „Siostry” (“Sisters”) – the most awarded documentary

As far as student fiction films are concerned, 2018 has belonged to “Tremors”. Dawid Bodzak’s film tells a story of an adolescent protagonist whose world is filled with a mystery difficult to be defined unequivocally. “Tremors” has been presented at 31 festivals at each continent. The biggest international success of the film is the Grand Prix at the Clermont-Ferrand Festival, the Best Student Film Prize at the IndieLisboa Festival, Valladolid Film Festival Prize, the Grand Prix at the Guanajuato Film Festival, and the Main Prize at the Kaohsiung Film Festival in Taiwan. Emi Buchwald’s film “Heimat” was also very popular with festival programmers. The story unfolds at a police station where adult children testify against a man who beat their father. „Heimat” has been presented at 25 film festivals winning among others the press prize at the festival "Młodzi i film" and the second prize at the Short Waves Festival. It also screened at many international festivals e.g. „New Directors New Films Fest” in Portugal, Milano Film Festival and Jagran Film Festival in New Delhi.

The most frequently awarded student documentary of 2018 is the film "Sisters" directed by Michał Hytroś, whose action takes place in the oldest female cloister in Poland. The protagonists - the sisters Anuncjata and Benedykta, (in the monastery for 40 years), with their own charm, bring the viewers into the world behind the wall, talk about their lives and decisions made in it. They show the monastic world with all its shades, completely stripped of the stereotype, often moving and funny. The film won the hearts of viewers, critics and jurors around the world. It was presented at over 30 festivals Winding the Silver Dragon in the international competition of the Krakow Film Festival, Special Prize at the „Młodzi i film” Festival, a prize at the „Dwa Brzegi”, Bytom Film Festival and the prize in the „Masters of Observation” category at the Lublin Film Festival.