FNE at Cannes: EFP Producer on the Move Kamila Polit

By Katarzyna Grynienko

Polish Producer on the Move Kamila Polit is a creative multitasking force who left the world of theater and opera for film production two years ago and has already proved to be one of the most promising production coordinators in the industry.

Polit is a Sociology and Master Business Administration graduate, fluently speaking in English and German. After finishing her studies she worked as a culture manager, focusing on music theater production. Between 1999 and 2004, she was responsible for PR at the ROMA Musical Theatre in Warsaw. She was a close co-worker of Mariusz Treliński, a renowned Polish opera director, during the production of his works both in Europe and USA. In 2007 she joined Jan Dworak in reactivating the Polish production company Prasa & Film (www.prasaifilm.pl), of which she is now a shareholder as well as film project coordinator and producer.

"In her work on judging potential projects, Kamila Polit joins excellent taste and artistic intuition with the use of sociological, economical and marketing tools. She perfectly understands that film is an artistic phenomenon as well as a product of the culture industry, that can fulfill the most diverse needs of the viewers, from entertainment to emotional experience," Dworak told FNE.

The first feature produced by Polit was All That I Love, directed by Jacek Borcuch, which premiered in Poland on January 15, 2010. The film evolves around the lives of four small town teenagers who form a punk rock band and dream about playing at the local festival. Their transition from boys to men takes place during the political turmoil which overtook Poland in the 80's and the rise of the Solidarity movement. The movie became an instant success with the audience and both local as well as foreign critics. "Kamila Polit is very active on the international market, which resulted in successful screenings of our film during several international film festivals including the ones in Rotterdam, Berlin and Sundance," Dworak said.

Polit admits that the role of a film producer plays to her professional strengths. "Being a producer requires activity on several levels that include managing, organization and administration of the project, the sales and promotion of the finished result and of course artistic input. I was always involved in artistic creativity so could only be happy that after my experience with theater I was approached by Jan Dworak to engage in film production, because I find it a wonderfully complex and fulfilling occupation," she told FNE. "My main focus criteria as a producer is to find a good, interesting project and a filmmaker who is passionate about it. The whole crew working on a film should be determined and precise in what they want to accomplish. I also cannot be emotionally indifferent to the project, as more and more Polish filmmakers seek help from their producer also on the artistic level. We chose to produce All That I Love because it was a film that had all these qualities and presents a topic of important historic events in a more contemporary way, which is much needed in Polish cinema," she said.

The producer was recommended to EFP by the Polish Film Institute as one of the most interesting young members of the industry. "The EFP Producers on the Move criteria are very hard to fulfill. There is an age barrier, and the chosen producer should also have high quality accomplishments. Luckily this year we didn't have a problem in choosing such a person in Poland. All That I Love turned out to be a production that fits perfectly the EFP requirements as a title internationally recognized at Sundance, Pusan and Rotterdam and very well received by Polish audience. In Kamila Polit we see a very promising young producer and I think we will surely hear about her and Prasa & Film in the near future, especially since the company has several interesting local and international projects in development," Maciej Karpiński, the Polish Film Institute's Deputy Director for International Relations, told FNE.

Prasa & Film is currently developing several interesting new projects including feature dramas and short film productions. "The biggest project we are working on is a new film by Krzysztof Krauze and Joanna Kos-Krauze titled Papusza. It will be a major project evolving around a fascinating character of a gypsy poet, Papusza. It is possible that we will find a German co-producer for this title. In our region it is important to develop international relations with foreign producers, as the big production budgets are seldom available from only one national source. International co-production can only improve the quality of the film and make it more approachable for the audience," Polit told FNE.