Jacek Bromski Steps Down as President of the Polish Filmmakers Association after 28 Years


    WARSAW: One of Poland's top filmmakers Jacek Bromski has unexpectedly resigned before the end of the current term from the position of president of the Polish Filmmakers Association, which he held since 1996.

    Jacek Bromski, photo Borys Skrzyński, SFPIn May 2022, Jacek Bromski was elected president of the Polish Filmmakers Association for the seventh time. After less than two years of another term, he announced that he was leaving office. On the website of the Polish Filmmakers Association, a statement was published on 26 February in which Bromski explains his decision.


    Jacek Bromski, a director, screenwriter and producer is one of the most popular and internationally recognised film professionals, a 7th term President of the Polish Filmmakers Association and a member of the Board of the Polish Film Institute. He was involved in the creation of the Cinematography Act and the amendment of the Copyright Act. His most well-known works include It's Me, The thief, Kids And Children, and the box office hit comedy trilogy focusing on the life of a small provincial community Snug As A Bug In a Rug (SF OKO), God's Little Garden (SF OKO) and God's Little Village (SF OKO). Bromski's directorial style often explores various genres, reflecting both his storytelling finesse and adaptability. With a career deeply rooted in the Polish film industry, Jacek Bromski continues to be a respected figure, contributing significantly to the cinematic narrative of his homeland.
    Read Jacek Bromski's full statement HERE

    Dear Colleagues,

    I want to inform you, and it is with regret that I do so, that I have decided to resign from the position of the President of the Polish Filmmakers Association before the end of my term. There are several reasons for this, primarily the abstract policy of destabilising the film community, an atmosphere of gossip, which I must admit, is very unpleasant and discouraging, and also a creation of a situation in which it is alleged as if I were an obstacle to achieving the goal of royalties from the Internet. In almost 30 years of my work for the community, I have never experienced such a scale of intrigues that takes away my desire to work for others. To clarify all matters, we have decided to initiate an independent audit in the Polish Filmmakers Association.

    I strongly oppose to anyone using me as a pretext to deny artists their rightful royalties from the Internet. Especially since it was SFP that started this battle several years ago and is now so close to success.

    I have approached the Board with a request to change the resolution regarding the General Reporting Meeting scheduled for 22 June and to announce it as a Reporting-Electoral Meeting for the election of a new President. Until the election, the Polish Filmmakers Association will be represented by Vice President Karolina Bielawska and Treasurer Michał Kwieciński.

    For several years, I have been convinced that there should be a generational change in the Association. I supported such transformations, and the result is a significantly rejuvenated composition of the Main Board. Now it is time for a younger President.

    I would like to sincerely thank all of you for the trust you have placed in me over the years, for the support and close cooperation. Thanks to these, the Polish Filmmakers Association is now one of the largest, independent, and exemplary organisations uniting filmmakers in Europe.

    After the political changes in Poland, we fought for survival, and then for the development of Polish cinematography. We established ZAPA - an organisation for collective management of our copyrights. We started collecting royalties for creators and producers. Our most important legislative achievements after the establishment of ZAPA include amending the Copyright Act, imposing an obligation on television broadcasters to pay royalties, which we achieved despite the resistance of many politicians and private television stations. Another significant achievement was the preparation, with the help of the late Professor Elżbieta Traple, of the Cinematography Act and the establishment of the Polish Film Institute.

    All these issues had to be fought for many years, often coming into conflict with changing authorities and powerful corporations on which the new law imposed an obligation to pay fees to Polish creators. This was possible thanks to the absolute unity and support of our entire community, which, despite natural differences, was able to show solidarity in the name of the well-understood interest of Polish cinematography. Andrzej Wajda, Jerzy Kawalerowicz, Kazimierz Kutz, Sylwester Chęciński, Krzysztof Zanussi, Janusz Majewski, Kuba Morgenstern, Tadeusz Chmielewski, Barbara Sass-Zdort, Jerzy Wójcik, Witold Sobociński, Allan Starski, Feliks Falk, Agnieszka Holland, Juliusz Machulski, and others actively participated in the fight for our rights. Without them, we would not have succeeded. Artists of this caliber could rise above their own ambitions, minor animosities, and act together.

    Thanks to SFP and ZAPA, over the years, more than 300 directors debuted at the Munk Studio, and young creators now have their own festival in Koszalin. We also support festivals in Gdynia and Krakow, which over the years have built their tradition and preserved their autonomy. We also provide support to many smaller film festivals and events. We promote Polish cinematography by organising film reviews worldwide, presenting new Polish films to diplomatic representatives, and supporting the participation of Polish creators in important festival events. We support all film professions performed by our members. We take care of seniors, not only socially but also by involving them in the current activities of the film community. During the pandemic, we reached out to them with individual and necessary assistance.

    We have also been actively operating on the international stage. We have signed agreements on mutual representation with all filmmakers' organisations worldwide, which was a key achievement in terms of collecting royalties for authors and film producers in Poland.

    Today, SFP is an efficiently operating, large non-governmental organisation, with a splendid headquarters at 85 Pańska Street. The Association is effective in collecting royalties, carries out intense cultural activities, has two creative work centres - in Kazimierz and Sopot, three restaurants, and manages the two-screen Kultura cinema. It is the only such strong organisation in the film community.

    We've managed to build all this over the last quarter of a century, even though in the past, not all culture ministers were favorable to us. We knew that only together and in solidarity could we survive difficult times and, in good times, build solid financial and organisational foundations. We carried this sense of solidarity from the times of the Polish People's Republic because we knew that in the face of political oppression, we had to stick together. I wish the younger generations that they take over this sense of community and not allow themselves to be divided, and consequently, marginalised. Remember that Polish creativity, especially the Polish Film School, Cinema of Moral Concern, and contemporary cinematography, has always been perceived as important for the global film heritage.

    Once again, I thank you for these years of cooperation and trust. At the same time, I apologise to all members of the Polish Filmmakers Association who, at the last Congress, gave me over 90% of the votes, that I am leaving before the end of my term. I regret that I will not see through to the end the mission of securing royalties from the Internet, but I believe it will end with another success for the Polish film community. I wish that to all of us.

    Jacek Bromski