Principal photography begins Monday (March 17) in Malta on the big-budget historical Egyptian epic Agora by Academy Award-winner Alejandro Amenábar. The shoot on location in Malta will take about 15 weeks, according to an announcement by Madrid-based Mod Producciones.

The Museum of Polish History is holding a review of 21 documentaries relating to various aspects of World War II. Polish radio quoted a museum spokesman as saying the festival explores the war experience of the populations of many nations, not only Poles but also Russians, Germans, Czechs and Americans

Tricks by Polish director Andrzej Jakimowski has won the Knight Grand Jury Prize for best foreign film at the Miami Film Festival, Polish Radio's external service reported. Released in 2007, Tricks has won awards in Venice, Tokyo, Mannheim, Sao Paulo and Bratislava.

Trial broadcasts of 12 programmes from public broadcaster TVP and private broadcasters TVN and Polsat are under way in Warsaw, according to the Krakow-based research and consulting firm PMR Ltd. If the tests are successful as expected, it could mean a full-scale launch of digital mobile TV in Poland later this year.

The Polish government has announced plans to discontinue compulsory television and radio licence fees. The ruling centre-right Civic Platform party had said it favoured the move last autumn when it took power, and a formal announcement of the decision followed on March 6.

A cinema for documentaries opened in Budapest this week. The DocuArt project is a comprehensive film distribution concept that aims to increase cooperative efforts within the documentary film industry as well as attract a larger audience for Hungarian and foreign productions.

Digital TV platform Cyfrowy Polsat, which plans to list on the Warsaw Stock Exchange, is considering a global offer as well, but is waiting to decide until the markets stabilise, CEO Dominik Libicki told the Polish news agency PAP in an interview.

Renowned Polish actor on both stage and screen Gustaw Holoubek died on March 6 at the age of 85. Holoubek acted in more than 50 films for cinema and television. He also was a theatre director and teacher, and served as a Member of Parliament and a senator.

Private media group TVN SA is asking the European Commission to investigate whether its public competitor Telewizja Polska SA has unfair advantage due to state subsidies it receives. TVN says Poland's legal and regulatory framework on the financing of public television through public aid violates EU law.

The 12th Sofia International Film Festival, to be held March 6-12, will focus on the cinemas of two nations - Russia and the Netherlands, the organizers announced on Feb. 27. Additional programs will be held March 17-23 in the capital, March 6-16 in Plovdiv and March13-21 in the coastal city of Burgas. The bill includes nearly 100 feature films, 30 documentaries and 60 short films.