In 2014, Polish documentary films were shown at international film festivals almost 380 times, winning a total of almost 70 awards. Polish documentary film was the special guest at the following festivals: Doc Aviv in Israel, Guanajuato in Mexico, Cinema Verite in Iran and Documentarist in Turkey. We would like to invite you to read the summary of 2014.

In 2014, Polish documentary film was very successful in the international arena. For the fourth time, the editors of Polish Docs prepared a numerical summary of festival screenings and awards won by Polish film makers.

Last year, Polish documentary films were shown at almost 190 festivals around the world. During twelve months, almost 380 film screenings took place, almost 280 out of which were competition screenings. In 2014, international festival audience watched over 100 Polish documentary films.

The record-breaker of 2014 is the film "Our Curse" by Tomasz Śliwiński - it was shown 28 times at international festivals - with "Joanna" by Aneta Kopacz close behind, with its 26 screenings. The following places are taken by the documentary films: "Domino Effect" (17 screenings), "When I am a Bird" (16), "Sati" (15), "Abu Haraz" (15), "A Visit" (13), "Walking Under Water" (13), and  "Sometimes I Dream I'm Flying" (12).

From January to December, Polish documentary films won a total of almost 70 awards. Here, "Our Curse" is also a winner, with 15 awards from international festivals. It is followed by "Joanna" with 13 awards. Both of these films are also nominated for the Academy Award. Other frequently awarded documentary films in 2014 include: "Domino Effect" and "Abu Haraz" - awarded five times, "Sati" awarded four times, and "When I am a Bird" winning three statuettes.

An undoubted success is the premiere screening of "15 Corners of the World" by Zuzanna Solakiewicz within the frames of Semaine de la Critique at the International Film Festival in Locarno. The film left the festival with the Premio SRG SSR award. Important awards went also to the films: "Deep Love" by Jan P. Matuszyński ("Silver George" for the Best Documentary Film at Moscow Film Festival), "Sometimes I Dream I'm Flying" by Aneta Popiel-Machnicka (Blackmagic Design Cinematography Award at Slamdance FF). Full list of the awards below.

Two of the most important documentary film festivals in the world were invaded by Polish films: DOK Leipzig (9 films) and IDFA (11 films), where the films "The Queen of Silence" by Agnieszka Zwiefka and "Something Better to Come" by Hanna Polak had their international premières. The latter was given the Special Award by the jury in Amsterdam.

The crowning of the promotional effort in 2014 was the qualification of two short documentaries: "Starting Point" by Michał Szcześniak and "Object" by Paulina Skibińska for the short film competition at Sundance FF and two Academy Awards nominations for "Joanna" and "Our Curse" in the short documentary film category.

2014 was also a fruitful year as far as actions dedicated to the documentary film industry are concerned. For the first time, thanks to the initiative of Krakow Film Foundation, a Polish delegation of film producers took part in the International Documentary film Market Sheffield Marketplace, held every year in the first half of June at the Sheffield Doc/Fest.  Ten representatives of film producer companies: Lava Films, Balabusta, Hanna Polak Films, ZK Studio, Studio Filmowe Kronika, Endorfina Studio, Wajda Studio, Centrala and Ragusa Film  had a chance to show their projects to a large group of international experts and investors, who visit the film market in Sheffield in great numbers.

Last year, for the eighth time, Krakow Film Foundation organised the national stall Polish Docs at the Sunny Side of the Doc in La Rochelle - the largest documentary cinema market in Europe. As every year, on the Polish stall the latest Polish documentary films were promoted, and accredited producers had a chance to look for money to spend on their projects and widen their international contacts.

In May, Polish documentary cinema was also the special guest at the festival Doc Aviv in Tel Aviv.  The audience in Israel had a chance to watch recent Polish documentary films, including:  "The Art of Disappearing" by Bartek Konopka and Piotr Rosołowski and "Sometimes I Dream I'm Flying" by Aneta Popiel-Machnicka as well as get acquainted with the financing, producing and distributing model of short documentary cinema in Poland.

In June, the Documentarist festival in Istanbul organised a review of classic Polish documentary film. The audience in Turkey watched the masterpieces from the programme "Masters from Krakow" prepared by Krakow Film Festival (among others, by Marcel Łoziński, Bogdan Dziworski, Bohdan Kosiński, Kazimierz Karabasz, Tomasz Zygadło, Krzysztof Kieślowski, Paweł Łoziński) and some latest films.

The producers of documentaries also had a chance to take part in the Polish-Mexican Bilateral Forum, organised within the frames of industry events at the Guanajuato IFF  in Mexico, which was a part of a large event organised by, among others, Polish Film Institute, Munk Studio, Krakow Film Foundation, Lodz Film School and Żubroffka Festival, where Poland was the guest of honour.  Within the frames of Polish film review, several dozens of new and classic films were shown, including the retrospectives of documentary films by Marcin Koszałka and Wojciech Staroń, films from Wajda School, Munk Studio, film schools in Lodz and Katowice, as well as the selection of the best recent documentary films, represented by Krakow Film Foundation. 

Traditionally, KFF prepared Polish film programmes Polish Docs at documentary film market Doc Shop at the Hot Docs festival in Canada, Docs for Sale at IDFA in the Netherlands, Doc Market at Thessaloniki Documentary Festival in Greece, Doc Outlook at Visions du Reel in Switzerland, East Silver in the Czech Republic and DOK Market at DOK Leipzig in Germany. Within the frames of DOK. Leipzig, there was also, organised by KFF for the fourth time, the meeting with the most important representatives of documentary film industry, Polish Docs Meeting With Decision Makers, and at IDFA, Polish Docs and HBO Europe were the hosts of Guests Meet Guests, prepared for the several hundred international guests of the festival.

All events received the financial support of Polish Film Institute and the Ministry of Culture and National Heritage. The partners are: Krakow Festival Office, Krakow Film Commission, Polish Cultural Institute in London, Polish Institute in Tel Aviv, Polish Embassy in Mexico and HBO Europe.



15 Corners of the World, dir. Zuzanna Solakiewicz

67th Locarno Film Festival, Switzerland - Semaine de la Critique - Premio SRG SSR

16th Bratislava International Film Festival, Slovakia - Special Mention

Abu Haraz, dir. Maciej Drygas

28th Pärnu International Documentary and Antropological FF, Estonia - Prize for the Best Film on Survival of Indigenous Peoples

XIV International Documentary Film Festival «Flahertiana», Russia - Big Golden Nanook, Silver Nanook

Festival Ânûû-rû Âboro, New Caledonia - Grand Prix

33rd Jean Rouch International Film Festival, France - Prix Monde en Regards

Walking Under Water, dir. Ewa Kubacka

21st Hot Docs - Canadian International Documentary Film Festival, Canada -Special Jury Prize

Los Angeles Film Festival, the USA -Honorable Mention

Sometimes I Dream I'm Flying, dir.  Aneta Popiel-Machnicka

Slamdance Film Festival, the USA - Blackmagic Design Cinematography Award

International “Gold Panda” Awards for Documentary, China - International Gold Panda Award for Documentary

Deep Love, dir. Jan P.Matuszyński

Moscow Film Festival, Russia - "Silver George" for the Best Film of the Documentary Competition

Minsk International Film Festival “LISTAPAD”, Belarus - Diploma «For a profound portrayal of humanity»

A Diary of A Journey, dir. Piotr Stasik

Docudays UA International Human Rights Documentary Film Festival, Ukraine - Andriy Matrosov Award From The Docudays Ua Organizing Committee

15th Polish Film Festival in Los Angeles, the USA - Hollywood Eagle Documentary Award

Domino Effect, dir. Piotr Rosołowski, Elwira Niewiera

Visions du Reel, Switzerland - Interreligiuos Prize

11th Yerevan International Film Festival GOLDEN APRICOT, Armenia - Silver Apricot Award

13th DokuFest International Documentary and Short FF, Kosovo - International Documentary Competition / Feature Dox - Winner

Budapest International Documentary Festival, Hungary - Let Me Follow the Call section Winner

57th DOK. Leipzig, Germany - Golden Dove for an Outstanding German Documentary

Gottland, dir. Viera Čakányová, Petr Hátle, Rozalie Kohoutová, Lukáš Kokeš, Radovan Síbrt , Klára Tasovská

18th Jihlava International Documentary Film Festival, the Czech Republic - Silver Eye Special Mention

Famufest, the Czech Republic - Jury Honorable Mention

Joanna, dir. Aneta Kopacz

36. Films de Femmes de Creteil, France - Audience Award - Best International Short Film, Paris-Est Créteil University Jury Award

Docudays UA International Human Rights Documentary Film Festival, Ukraine - docu/Short Special Mention, Audience Award

11th European Medium-Length Film Meetings, France - Audience Award

FIDE International Student FF, France - Prix coup de Coeur

Docs Barcelona, Spain -Special Mention

17th Ismailia IFF for Documentary & Shorts, Egypt - Best Short Documentary Film Prize (Golden Tablet)

Makedox, Macedonia - Special Moral Approach Award

Palm Springs ShortFest, the USA - Greater Palm Springs Convention & Visitors Bureau Grand Jury Award, Best Documentary Short

11 Festival du Cinema de Brive, France - Audience Award

Los Angeles Film Awards, the USA - Best Documentary Feature

When I am a Bird, dir.  Monika Pawluczuk

Festival of Migrant Film in Ljubljana, Slovenia - Special Mention

12th International Festival Signes de Nuit, France - Signs Award for Documentary

11th Fresh Film Fest, the Czech Republic - Special Mention

To Fly Or Not To Fly, dir. Aniela Gabryel

VIS Vienna Independent Shorts Film Festival in Vienna, Austria - Vienna Short Film Award for Best Fiction/Documentary Film

Left Side of the Face, dir. Marcin Bortkiewicz

Aljazeera International Documentary Film Festival, Qatar - Best Camera Work Award

My House Without Me, dir. Magdalena Szymków

Women in Film and Television, WOW Film Festival, Australia - Best International Documentary WOW Award

Our curse, dir. Tomasz Śliwiński

23rd Aspen Shorts Fest, the USA - Best Documentary Award

Indielisboa, Portugal  - Audience Award

Doc/Fest Sheffield, the UK - Student Doc Award, Audience Award

Monterrey International FF, Mexico - Best International Short Documentary

Look& Roll Film Festival, Switzerland - Denk an mich Foundation Award

22nd Raindance Film Festival, the UK - Best Documentary Short

Chagrin Documentary Film Festival, the USA - Best Student film

9th Sapporo International Short Film Festival and Market, Japan - Best Documentary

IndieCork Festival, Ireland - Special Mention

Woodstock Film Festival, the USA -The Diane Seligman Award for Best Short Documentary

Heartland Film Festival, the USA - Jimmy Stewart Memorial Crystal Heart Award

7th Annual Imagine Science Film Festival, the USA - Nature Scientific Merit Award

Sleepwalkers International Film Festival 2014, Estonia - Special Mention

12th Bogota International Short Film Festival, Colombia -Best International Short Documentary

The Governance of Love, dir. Adela Kaczmarek

DOXA - Documentary Film Festival, Canada - Honourable Mention

A Visit, dir. Matej Bobrik

12th International Short Film Festival in THE PALACE, Bulgaria - Best Documentary Film

Father and Son, dir.  Paweł Łoziński

28th Pärnu International Documentary and Antropological FF, Estonia - The Best Self-Portrayal

Father and Son on a Journey, dir. Marcel Łoziński

Zagreb DOX FF, Croatia - My Generation Award

28th Pärnu International Documentary and Antropological FF, Estonia - The Best Self-Portrayal

Leaders, dir. Paweł Ferdek

28th Pärnu International Documentary and Antropological FF, Estonia - The Best Film for Kids

Rogalik, dir. Paweł Ziemiński

6th Go Short International Short Film Festival, the Netherlands - NTR Go Short award for the Best European Short Documentary

Sati, dir. Bartłomiej Świderski

62nd Trento Film Festival, Italy - Italian Alpine Club Golden Gentian Prize

12th International Mountain Film Festival in Poprad, Slovakia - The Prize of the Jury

Aljazeera International Documentary Film Festival, Qatar - Best Direction Award

Festival International du Film de Montagne d'Autrans, France - Prix Festivals Connexion – Région Rhône Alpes

Something better to come, dir.  Hanna Polak

IDFA 2014, the Netherlands - Special Jury Award

Art Doc Fest 2014, Russia -Grand Prix 


*data collected on the basis of the information received from producers, filmmakers and festivals by Polish Docs. If you know about foreign awards for Polish documentary films which are not included  in this summary, we would like to ask you to send a message to the editors of the portal: redakcja@polishdocs.pl