10-06-2020

FNE at Krakow Film Festival 2020 DOC LAB POLAND: Daughter of Fuji and Easy Rider Behind the Iron Curtain

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KRAKOW: Daughter of Fuji and Easy Rider Behind the Iron Curtain were among the eleven new documentary projects showcased to international distributors, sales agents and festival representatives at the 5th edition of the DOC LAB POLAND: Docs To Start (3-4 July 2020) pitching session, held during the 60th Krakow Film Festival. Each project is in development or an early stage of production and should be completed in 2021-2022.

Daughter of Fuji (Poland, Finland)
Directed by Eri Mizutani

The camera will look at the lives of the hard-working widow and loner Keiko, a teacher of dance-prayer in honour of the goddess Fuji, in Eri Mizutani’s documentary. The film is a Polish/Finnish coproduction between Polished Productions and Yle TV. The film will be completed by 2022. 

Keiko decides to reform the ossified tradition she gave her life to. The function that she performed for years to prevent the eruption of the volcano, gave her high social status, but at the same time was imposed on her and was associated with a lot of restrictions and sacrifices. She could not leave her town, and she could not end the unhappy marriage. She had to submit fully to the will of the community. 

“Keiko is the last dance teacher for Fuji in Japan and must choose her successor. However, she wants to wait until the candidate is 18 years old and she can make the decision herself. She doesn't want to delegate her role forcibly, but if she gives up she will not only lose her position, but also destroy the tradition that is 300 years old. Keiko faces a serious dilemma,” said producer Anna Fam.

“Keiko is a contemporary Antigone,” added director Eri Mizutani, a graduate of the Film School in Łódź. A completely female team is expected to work on the project.

Easy Rider Behind the Iron Curtain (Poland)
Directed by Andrzej Miękus

Easy Rider Behind the Iron Curtain is produced by Olga Bieniek through Filmicon with a planned budget of 220,000 EUR. The shoot is planned for spring - autumn 2021 with the film to be completed by the end of 2022.

“This is a story of four men for whom, 50 years ago, abandoned by the Red Army after World War II, Harley-Davidson motorcycles paved the way to freedom behind the Iron Curtain,” producer Olga Bieniek said about the new project by Andrzej Miękus. The planned distribution includes cinema and VOD local and international release, banking on the popularity of the Harley Davidson brand. 

“In 1970 our protagonists illegally watched (the U.S. film) Easy Rider and three years later organised the first international rally, which was attended by over 200 riders from the West. Our heroes wanted to be like them and wanted to live like them. They challenged the system and sought freedom, years before the Solidarity, Walesa and the fall of the Berlin Wall. There was no ideology behind them, it was not a political movement. They just wanted to live like free people, but it was this freedom of mind that was the most dangerous for the system, because it was the most difficult to fight and very contagious,” said director Andrzej Miękus.