WROCŁAW: Twenty participants of the New Horizons Studio+ presented their projects during a special pitching session held on 8 August 2017 in Wrocław.
The 8th edition of New Horizons Studio+ took place from 5 to 8 August 2017.
The workshop gave young professionals an opportunity to talk about promotion, film marketing, sales, pitching, networking and festival strategy. The list of speakers conducting special workshops included David Pope (London Film Academy), Aranka Matits (EAVE) – representing Featurette, Alya Belgaroui-Degalet from Wild Bunch (EAVE), Raquel Cabrera (The Film Agency), Jakub Duszyński (Gutek Film, gutekfilm.pl), Jan Naszewski (New Europe Film Sales) and Mark Lautman (Intermission Film). See the full list of projects:
Najmro is a period piece following Zdzisław Najmrodzki, the fastest man on the Eastern side of the Iron Curtain, the king of the underworld and a legend in his own lifetime. Najmro steals, but he is also a man of honor and principles."We were looking for an inspiring character and found one in Zdzisław Najmrodzki, the master of great escapes. We want to create an action film set on the break of the 80s and 90s, when everything changed", director Mateusz Rakowicz told FNE.The film is the debut feature by Mateusz Rakowicz (highly praised for his recent short film Romantik), produced by Kuba Kosma through Serce Sp. z o.o. in coproduction with Polsat and Canal+.The planned budget is 1.8 m EUR / 8 m PLN with a coproduction grant of 72,121 EUR / 307,500 PLN from the Mazovia Film Fund. Shooting is planned for spring 2018.
The Sybil (Poland)
The Sybil is a story of a middle aged woman Eva, who has to become a contemporary prophet, by finding a belief and trust in her own intuition and dreams. "The ancient Sybil foretold the end of the world. Nowadays the signs that our world is ending are small, like the feeling that we are losing the love of our family. My vision of the apocalypse is not spectacular, it is an intimate experience", director Zuzanna Solakiewicz told FNE.The film is directed by Zuzanna Solakiewicz. The project was developed as part of the Berlinale Talents and is produced by Marta Golba through Endorfina Studio, a company that also produced the director's highly praised documentary 15 Corners of the World. The project is in the development stage with shooting planned for 2018. It is looking for both financial and artistic collaborators.
Bailout, Folks! (Poland)
Accomplished Polish filmmaker Marek Lechki’s new drama unravels during a few days in May and follows Maciek (35), who realises his life is pointless. He steals the car of his boss and embarks on a desperate joyride. In the meantime, Magda (35), a town hall employee, handles the preparation of her anniversary events. Highly committed at first, she gradually notices all the dirt and fiction around her."We want to make an art house film, where the narrative will be built not only by logic, but also by raw emotions explored by the eye of the camera”, director Marek Lechki told FNE.The film is the first feature by the production company Telemark and is produced by Maciej Kubicki, who worked on prestigious TV projects including the local series Pact and In Treatment for HBO Poland.The planned budget is 586,354 EUR / 2.5 m PLN with 422,181 EUR / 1.8 m PLN production financing from the Polish Film Institute. Shooting is planned for spring 2018.
The debut feature by the Oscar shortlisted director Michał Szcześniak follows Ann (30), a workaholic who used to conduct science experiments in her laboratory and who is kidnapped outside her apartment’s door, where she lives with her partner John. The kidnapper locks her in a soundproof room and watches her on a monitor. Through a speaker he informs her that this is now his experiment."This story is scary but also universal, it could happen to anyone. In order to really appreciate life we need to examine the roots of our problems. In my story the character is forced to do that in an extreme way", Michał Szcześniak told FNE.Michał Szcześniak is an accomplished Polish film director, whose short documentary Starting Point was the only Polish title shortlisted for the Academy Awards in the Best Short Documentary Subject category in 2016. The film is produced by Ewa Turczyńska through her company Kosmos Production, with a planned budget of 656,735 EUR / 2.8 m PLN. The filmmakers are currently looking for sales agents and potential coproducers. The film received development funding from the Polish Film Institute. Shooting is planned for 2018.
Glorious Empire (Poland, USA)
The second feature by the Polish-American director Matt Szymanowski begins as a modern-day love story, but quickly turns into a psychological thriller about a duplicitous psychopath wreaking an unthinkable deception on her unassuming partner. Jeremy meets the young and beautiful Marta online and they quickly embark on a sexually charged and idealised love affair that rapidly escalates."I became fascinated with how psychopaths function within our society, how they can influence our lives not only in the private, but also in the public sphere. I decided to explore this issue further on screen", Matt Szymanowski told FNE.The film is produced by Agnieszka Wasiak through Lava Films (most recognised for its work on Magnus Von Horn’s drama The Hereafter) in coproduction with Andre Gaines (US). The project is in very early treatment stage, with a planned budget of 1.5 m EUR. Shooting is planned for 2019.
The Fall (UK)
Weronika Tofilska’s debut feature is a psychological drama about John, a disillusioned psychotherapist and a deeply unhappy man, who accidentally takes someone else’s life while trying to end his own. Seeing that as his second chance, he decides to change his life completely, but in the process he compromises himself and the people around him."It is a film about a man who gets a second chance, but the price to pay is very high. We are tackling the issues of an existential crisis that can happen to anyone", director Weronika Tofilska told FNE.The film is produced by Chris Hess through Bridgeway Films, most recognised for its work on the Academy Award nominated animated film The Bigger Picture. The planned budget is 1 m EUR with a production support received from Creative England. The film is in the development stage, with producers looking for sales agents and festivals.
Stefan Bohun’s debut feature follows the life of a Viennese family, that wants to fulfill ideals of liberal upbringing. To widen their sexual horizon, Susanne and Andreas start a “relationship experiment” with another man. Soon they learn that reasoning and responsibility are not always keys as Susanne loses herself in the arms of her new lover."We believe that the dark humor and comments of this story will transcend the Austrian borders and will allow us to make a film that will work internationally”, producer Davd Bohun told FNE.The film is directed by Stefan Bohun and produced by his brother David Bohun through Mischief Films. The project is in the production stage with principal shooting planned for spring 2018. The final budget has not been announced yet. The project received production financing from Creative Media Europe and is currently looking for sales agents and festivals.
Zoltan Nagy’s debut feature follows 18-year-old Dávid, a senior student at a music school and a talented violinist in a string orchestra. He has a special relationship with the youth orchestra’s conductor, Mr Kerekes, an engaging teacher in his sixties. When he discovers that his mentor is molesting a 13-year-old girl, his whole world falls apart."The film is set in a small community, but it tackles a universal issue, which we believe that it will make it relevant for different viewers and different markets", director Zoltan Nagy told FNE.The film is produced by Gabor Osvat through FilmFabriq with a planned budget of 300,000 EUR and it is fully funded by the Hungarian Film Fund Incubator programme. The film is set to be shot in summer 2018. The producers are currently looking for sales agents and festivals.
Cristian Pascariu’s debut feature follows Ciprian, whose father’s best friend is threatening to commit suicide. His father’s awkward “gift” to Ciprian is to ask him for help with his suicidal best friend. "The topic of suicide is serious, but I want to show that even the contemplation of suicide can be funny and can bring a positive reflection on life", director Cristian Pascariu told FNE.The producer is Cristina Mitea, most recognised for her work with Cristian Mungiu on several of his works including Graduation.The film is produced by Libra Film with a planned budget of 800,000 EUR, using a production support from the Romanian National Film Center. Shooting is planned for spring 2018. Producers are looking for sales agents and festivals.
Ego, Ego (Germany)
The feature by German director Zora Rux follows Marie, in her early thirties, who is proposed to by her boyfriend Julian. Overwhelmed by the proposition, she goes for the most honest answer: she will have to think about it. "It is a surrealistic film about what it really means to be true to yourself. I wanted to experiment with the film language and the way we show human thoughts and emotions", director Zora Rux told FNE.The film was shot independently in May 2018, with a budget of 60,000 EUR. "We really wanted to go ahead and make this picture, so we gathered the funds that we had and went on with the production. We are currently looking for sales agents", producer Leonie Minor told FNE. The film is currently in postproduction, with the premiere planned for 2018.