IN DARKNESS by Agnieszka Holland, and THE CITY OF RUINS by Damian Nenow will open the
23rd Polish Film Festival in America
November 4 – 20, 2011 | Chicago
In Darkness, the latest film by internationally-acclaimed director Agnieszka Holland, and The City of Ruins by Damian Nenow will open the 23rd Polish Film Festival in America (PFFA); the largest annual Polish cultural event outside of Poland. This year festival will take place in seven recognized film centers in Chicago, from November 4 to 20, 2011.
Both films will be shown at the Chicago premiere theater MUVICO ROSEMONT 18 (9701 Bryn Mawr Ave. Rosemont) at the VIP Opening Gala on Friday, November 4th at 8:45 p.m.
Highly praised by critics and audiences at the Toronto and Telluride Film Festival, Agnieszka Holland’s In Darkness is based on a true story In the Sewers of Lvov by Robert Marshall. This holocaust drama tells a heroic story of Leopold Socha, a simple sewer worker and petty thief living in German occupied Lvov during WW II. Intent on just getting himself and his family through the war at whatever cost, he does not care for Jews. Things change for him as he comes across a group of Jews trying to escape the liquidation of the Lvov ghetto. Motivated by the financial profits, he hides them in the labyrinth of the town’s sewers, only later to discover unexpected emotional union with them. This film is also an incredible tale of suffering and surviving the impossible, as the group of men, women and children outwit death during the 14 months of hiding in the darkness of the sewers.
The film features a smashing performance by Robert Wieckiewcz as a main character of Leopold Socha. The splendid cast also includes award-winning actors: Benno Furmann, Agnieszka Grochowska, Maria Schrader, Kinga Preis.
Agnieszka Holland and Robert Wieckiewicz will appear at the Opening Night Gala and take part in a post-screening discussion. A participation of the Lvov Ghetto survivers is expected, as well.
In Darkness, a Polish entry for the Academy award in a Foreign Language category, is broadly considered a major frontrunner for the award this year. Agnieszka Holland has been nominated to the Oscar twice so far for her Europa, Europa and Angry Harvest. In Darkness is scheduled for release in the United States in February 2012 by Sony Pictures.
Damian Nenow’s The City of Ruins, 3D short animation film will precede the screening of In Darkness.
Commissioned by the Warsaw Uprising Museum and executed in famed Platige Image Film Studio, this short but powerful animation recreates Warsaw as it looked after a fall of the uprising in the end of 1944. Seen from the point of view of Liberator flying over, the devastation and destruction of Poland’s capital goes as far as the eye can see. Painstakingly researched and planned to be as faithful a reproduction as possible this astounding document is a reminder of how much Poland suffered, and a testament to how much it has achieved since.
Tickets for the Opening Gala in MUVICO ROSEMONT 18 (preceded by the Opening Reception in the Society for Arts), on November 4th can be purchased on www.pffamerica.com, or by calling PFFA main box-office773.486.9612. Also, the festival passes (for 7 films excluding the Opening, Closing and Special screenings) are already for sale. From October 15, the tickets and passes will be available in Polish bookstores, Polamer centers, and the PFFA main box-office.
The 23nd Polish Film Festival in America will showcase nearly 60 Polish movies (features and documentaries). Most of the films have English subtitles. Among invited guests the festival will welcome Polish celebrities, numerous outstanding Polish film producers, and other professionals of the Polish film industry.
Among principal Festival’s sponsors are: Polish Film Institute, Ministry of Foreign Affairs of the Republic of Poland, Comcast, State Farm Insurance, TVP Polonia, Startech Glass, and the Seneca Hotel.