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Anna Gawlita • Poland

"The film should reach more people than just festival viewers”


- An interview with producer Anna Gawlita of Poland's Kijora Film, one of the participants of Jihlava's 2018 Emerging Producers

Anna Gawlita • Poland

An interview with producer Anna Gawlita of Poland's Kijora Film, one of the participants of Jihlava's 2018 Emerging Producers.

Why do you produce documentaries? Do you believe that they have the power to change the world?
As a lawyer, I helped my life partner with the production of his films, but after the end of the law application, instead of opening my own law firm, I began to work full-time as a film producer. Now I'm balancing my work between documentary and feature films. The reason to produce documentaries is pretty banal – meeting the characters, just discovering their world, touching things that are super important to them, but also those not essential – and creating own story based on it. To be honest I don't know if documentaries can change the world. I am still asking myself.

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What do you think is the future of distribution of documentary films?
Documentary films are not easy to distribute. The internet is our future. Of course, viewers who watch our movie on the phone or tablet do not meet my dreams. But I think it's better if the film reaches more people than just festival viewers. 

What projects do you have under way?
I'm currently working on several projects in different stages of production.

Finished projects, before premiere:
Krzyżoki; creative documentary
It's my documentary directing debut. It is a story about a village in southern Poland where every year during Easter, for over 200 years, 30 farmers ride their horses along a 35-kilometre-long route. The state of tiredness and drunkenness is mixed with religious ecstasy. Sacrum and profane.

In post-production process:
Hurrah, We Are Still Alive!; feature fiction film
It is a story about a group of actors centred around the charismatic Director. Actors are ready for brutal competition for His favour and live together in a group that looks like commune just to be closer to dominant One. In the movie, the Director is absent – we just hear about Him in actors’ conversations, when they are impatiently waiting to meet Him. 

In development process:
- Ordinary Country; creative documentary
A portrait of ordinary Polish life in the 70s and 80s from a surprising angle. It will show Polish communist surveillance on an internal instructional video directed for employees of Citizens' Militia and Security Services. Is this image of communist repression very far from the modern world in which every citizen carries a listening device in his own pocket?
- White Chief; documentary
Alain is a short middle-aged French man, who works as a keeper at the apartment complex located in Monte Carlo. His life would probably be a monotonous performance of his simple duties if he did not marry a Cameroonian woman, Chantal, as a result of which he inherited the role of “the first son” –the ruler of the village, from his African father-in-law.
- The Leader; documentary
A film about a young man, Simone, who believes that communism is an answer to the surrounding chaos of the modern world. Despite his young age, he holds the most important position in the Italian Communist Party in Bologna. The Congress of the party is coming soon – will the members choose to follow the path that Simone proposes? Or will they stick to the old and outdated strategies that lead to the loss of support for communists in Italy? 
- 9:17 pm INCIDENT; feature fiction film
A married couple, driving a car to a party, hit a dog. They leave him on the street. The next day Marek finds out that he has committed an offense for which, according to Polish law, he can even be arrested. He also learns that the effects of the dog's accident were much more serious. Is this only Marek's responsibility for this misfortune? How to deal with guilt? 


Emerging Producers is a promotional and educational project, which brings together talented European documentary film producers. The programme is organised and curated by the Ji.hlava International Documentary Film Festival.

Deadline for applications to the Emerging Producers 2019 edition is 31 March, 2018. Click here.

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