We simply threw ourselves in the film project.
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19. 09. 2015. Department

The school trip with „Singing Napkin” to be victorious in Gdynia.

‘All of us, without exception, threw ourselves into this film project!’ said Basia Wypych, acting graduate playing in the “Singing Napkin”. The professional shoot and the director had a very precise vision of what we were creating together and on top of that provided us with a great deal of warmth’ recalls the actress.

The film „Singing Napkin” – an acting diploma film directed by prof. Mariusz Grzegorzek, Lodz Film School Rector, was screened in the „Different Look” section of the 40th Gdynia Film Festival. Gdynia was the next stage on the film’s festival path. Behind us already, Wrocław (New Horizons) and Poznań (Transatlantic). Still ahead the premiere of the film in the late autumn and film club distribution. “Singing Napkin” is an unusual film as it was for the first time in the history made as a full-length diploma film of acting students.

‘They have tons of energy and good will, and it had to be made use of ’, said Prof. Mariusz Grzegorzek at the meeting which followed the screening in Gdynia. The film consists of four independent film novellas of various stylistic forms. ‘We spent a lot of time together talking about what eats us, what fascinates us, what suits us best. It helped me to cast the students in such a way which would match the natural predispositions of each of them and give them a chance to present themselves’ said the director.

Basia Wypych, Ania Mrozowska, Kaja Walden, Jędrek Wielecki, Mateusz Rzeźniczak and Marcin Miodek – the actors in “Singing Napkin” told the audience about how the idea for the film originated. ‘The idea was born in the second year of our studies and it grew until we decided to go and see the Rector about it. We were studying in the film school after all. Why not make a film for our diploma? We had an idea of the meeting in our heads and then a surprise on the set’ said Mateusz Rzeźniczak. ‘… I expected some witchcraft type of direction, long devastating rehearsals but it turned out that I met a director who gave me a great deal of freedom who allowed me to open up, and a director who knows what he wants’ added Jędrek Wielecki.

‘I’m not a fan for long rehearsals, sitting and talking. It doesn’t give much. We meet on the set, here and now. It’s a physical and energetic encounter. Of course, we already know quite a lot about each Rother cause we’re prepared for the meeting. And the result of the encounter can be seen on the screen. It’s something that is born between us. I do not have a “method” said the Rector about his work with the actors. ‘It’s always a person meeting another person. It’s not always easy. It’s a kind of surgery on a living organism. For some reason it’s needed by each of us.

Prof. Zofia Uzelac, the Dean of Acting and Vice-Dean, Piotr Seweryński, were present at the screening. For nearly 70 years of the school’s existence, nobody has decided to produce a full-length diploma film of the acting students. It requires great courage and is risky. It is a combination of many factors, firstly the vision of the director, Mariusz Grzegorzek, secondly the engagement of the actors and finally, the person who made the film come to life - Barbara Grzegorzek, the producer of the film’ said the Dean, Uzelac.

‘The film is a kind of long-lasting self-presentation. The plays we performed although they were fantastic are gone. All is left are memories and photographs. But the film will stay with us’ said Basia Wypych.

During the meeting with the audience, the film’s cinematographer, Przemysław Brynkiewicz and the art director, Natalia Giza also participated.

photos: Michał Siarek