POLISH ANIMATED FILMS AT INTERNATIONAL FESTIVALS – 2022 IN REVIEW
We spent 2022 on trying to return to normalcy, which was not quite possible after the events of February. Festival organisers did whatever they could to create a friendly post-pandemic reality. It is largely thanks to their efforts that Polish animated shorts have managed to reach audiences around the world and have had the chance to win multiple awards. You're going to find all about it in our annual summary, which you are kindly invited to read.
It was difficult to surpass the accomplishments of the previous year, but 2022 proved to be quite a successful year for domestic cinema in the end. Our animated short films were shown at almost 200 international festivals, with mostly competition screenings. Our productions were invited over 320 times.
The animation that was most frequently invited to international film events last year was the film by the Kijek/Adamski duo. Slow Light was screened at more than 30 festivals. Airborne by Andrzej Jobczyk and Fury by Julia Siuda were right behind it with 28 screenings each. Hierophany by Maria Nitek, Crumbs of Life by Katarzyna Miechowicz, Toothless by Andrea Guizar or Five Minutes Older by Sara Szymańska, were also shown numerous times around the world.
Polish animations were awarded more than 40 times last year. The film that received the most of these awards is Airborne. Andrew Jobczyk's name came up as many as six times in last year's verdicts. Once There Was a Sea… by Joanna Kożuch can boast five awards, while Slow Light – four.
Two Polish animated films were awarded in January. Impossible Figures and Other Stories I by Marta Pajek was recognised at the PIAFF – Paris International Animation Film Festival for Best Artistic Concept in France, while Marcin Giżycki's latest film won the Best Experimental Animation award at the Super Short Film Festival in Barcelona.
As usual, Clermont-Ferrand festival was January's highlight. The latest Polish short film productions were promoted on site by the Polish Shorts delegation, which included representatives of Poland's most important film institutions. In turn, the films Five Minutes Older and a co-production by Joanna Kożuch were presented in the international competition. It was her Once There Was a Sea… that left the French festival with the student award. Airborne and Fury were also competing for the attention of its jury. The experimental short The Edge of Town by Daria Kasperek and Michal Modlinger was also invited to the European Short Film Audience Awards segment.
Although this article is primarily about animated shorts, it's impossible to ignore such an accolade. The Warsaw-based animation studio Animoon has received a prestigious nomination for the Cartoon Tributes award given annually at Cartoon Movie – the largest co-production forum for feature-length animation film projects. The nomination was for the puppet film Even Mice Belong in Heaven.
In February, another award went to our last year's festival record holder. The film I'm Here by Julia Orlik stole the hearts of jurors once more. This time it was named best short animation at the Slamdance festival.
In March Insect, the new film by Marcin Podolec, was recognised at the Athens Animfest. And back in April, the Green had its chance to shine. Karolina Kajetanowicz's animated film received the Best Jamie Bolio Award at the KABOOM Animation Festival in Amsterdam. In turn, Marta Pajek's latest film won the short film competition at the Lithuanian Vilnius International Film Festival, while the animated short by Wojciech Sankiewicz, Jacek Olejnik, Rafał Sankiewicz, and Bartosz Terlecki was appreciated at the Brno Film Festival in the Czech Republic.
In the spring, we also learned that Olga Kłyszewicz's animated short We Are Not There Tomorrow had been invited to the competition of La Cinef Festival de Cannes.
The summer months brought more festival events and, consequently, awards for our films. Impossible Figures and Other Stories I and Love in Times of Coal-Based Economy by Tomasz Siwiński were honoured with special mentions at Animafest Zagreb. The Hole by Piotr Kaźmierczak was awarded at the 62nd International Film Festival for Children and Youth in Zlín. Joanna Kożuch's short animated film was recognised by the jury of the CinemAmbiente Festival, Andrzej Jobczyk's film received the award for best animated short at the prestigious and Oscar-qualifying Short Shorts Film Festival & Asia 2022, while Toothless by Andrea Guizar was recognised by the international jury of the Portuguese festival FEST-New Directors, New Films.
July was also full of good news. Katarzyna Miechowicz's surrealist film received a special mention at the just-concluded Fest Anča festival. The animated short Misaligned by Marta Magnuska qualified to participate in the Pardi di Domani competition of the prestigious Locarno film festival. It was the first ever Polish animated short film to be screened in this competition. We also learned the winners of Animator. The Wojciech Juszczak Special Award went to Aga Jarząb's animated short Great Wall of Poland. In the Polish competition, the main award went to Impossible Figures and Other Stories I.
A month later, Andrzej Jobczyk's film found itself among the ten titles awarded by the participants of the São Paulo International Short Film Festival. And in September, the film We Hope You Won't Need To Come Back by Anastasia Naumenko received an award at ABIFF – Animation Bucharest International Film Festival in Romania.
If you thought the summer holidays were the hottest festival time, you'd be wrong – at least when it comes to animation. It was in October that our films were screened most often and awarded just as often. The animated film Crab by Piotr Chmielewski received a special mention at the Stoptrik festival. Tomasz Siwiński's film received the Grand du Jury at the ONE Country ONE Film International Festival in France, Joanna Kożuch's animated documentary came back from the 16th Biennial of Animation Bratislava with the Saint Adalbert Award. And this wasn't the only award for this film. Once There Was a Sea… was awarded at three festivals – Animafest in Romania, Ekofilm in the Czech Republic, and Sedicicorto in Italy.
Toothless by Andrea Guizar received a special mention from the jury of BRNO16, while Misaligned came first in the best short film competition at Dok Leipzig and received the Golden Dove award. As every year, there was no shortage of Polish productions at Iceland's The Pigeon International Film Festival, which translated into awards for Katarzyna Agopsowicz's Prince in a Pastry Shop and Katarzyna Warzecha's We Have One Heart.
Two awards in October wen to Andrzej Jobczyk's film. First, Airborne received the jury prize at the War on Screen festival in France, only to delight the jury at Canada's Spark Animation festival a short while later, which gave it a special mention in recognition of its artistic vision.
The subversive title of This Will Not Be a Festival Film – and a similar story – impresses the jury and captivates the viewers of Julia Orlik's latest film. It was the latter group that decided to give the film the Audience Award at this year's CinEast.
Things were a little quieter in November, but Polish animated films still could be seen at the most important international festivals – with their jurors awarding our productions several times. This was the case with Julia Siuda's film. Her Fury was recognised for sound design at the SPASM festival in Canada. Two more awards went to Andrzej Jobczyk. The first was for best animated film at the Badalona festival, and the second was a win at the Piccolo Festival dell'Animazione. Two awards also went to the makers of Slow Light. The animated film by the Kijek/Adamski duo received a special mention at PÖFF Shorts in Estonia and was awarded for its direction at Cinamina in Portugal.
Also worth mentioning is the award for Betina Bożek's project The Helpers, which won at the CEE Animation Forum.
A win for Marta Magnuska's production concluded the award year. Her Misaligned was named best animated film at the Aguilar Film Festival.
As you can see, there was no shortage of Polish animated shorts at numerous major international festivals. However, there were more Polish appearances at these festivals than just our films. Our representation was also present at industry events. As usual, we couldn't have missed Clermont Ferrand. The presence of Polish films at both the festival and fair was prepared and coordinated by the Krakow Film Foundation with financial support from the Polish Film Institute.
The Animated in Poland pitch sessions were held as part of KFF Industry for Polish animated projects in production. Three partner-sponsored prizes were awarded during the session. The first award was sponsored by KFF Industry partner Sound Mind studio and went to the project Magda, directed by Adela Kaczmarek - Siwińska (prod. Letko). This was the second time that a prize had been funded by Fixafilm, which gave it to Ewa Borysewicz's project The Miracle (prod. Letko). Crew United, the third sponsor, honoured Misaligned by Marta Magnuska (prod. Animoon)
Events organised or co-organised by KFF were held with the support of: the Polish Film Institute, as well as foreign partners – Clermont-Ferrand ISFF.
LIST OF AWARDS FOR POLISH ANIMATED SHORT FILMS IN 2022*
Airborne, dir. Andrzej Jobczyk
Short Shorts Film Festival & Asia 2022, Japan, 2022 – Best Short Award of Animation Competition
33rd Sao Paulo International Short Film Festival, Brazil, 2022 – 10 favorites foreign films – Audience Prize
War on Screen - Festival International de Cinéma, France, 2022 – Jury Award
48th edition of the FILMETS Badalona Film Festival, Spain, 2022 – Venus of Badalona for Best Animation Film
Spark Animation Festival 2022, Canada, 2022 – Special Mention Artistic Vision
15th Piccolo Festival dell'Animazione, Italy, 2022 – Winner of the "Green Animation" Category
Once There Was a Sea…, dir. Joanna Kożuch
44th Clermont-Ferrand Short Film Festival, France, 2022 – Student Prize
Sediciocorto International Film Festival, 2022, Italy, 2022 – Animalab Award
Biennial of Animation Bratislava (BAB), 2022, Slovakia, 2022 – St. Vojtech Prize
17th Animest – Bucharest International Animation Film Festival, Romania, 2022 – Best AniDoc
48th EKOFILM International Environmental Film Festival, 2022, Czech Republic, 2022 – Best Short Film
C’est la vie, dir. Wojciech Sankiewicz, Jacek Olejnik, Rafał Sankiewicz, Bartosz Terlicki
2. Brno Film Festival, 2022, Czech Republic, 2022 – Special Mention
Flatpack Festival, 2022, United Kingdom, 2022 – WTF Award
Sentiero Film Factory, 2022, Italy, 2022 – Special Mention
Der Blaue Reiter, dir. Marcin Giżycki
Experimental Film Festival Barcelona, 2021, Spain, – Special Mention
Super Short Film Festival Barcelona, 2021, Spain, – Best Experimental Animation
Knight of the Reel Awards, 2022, India, – Animation&Art Winner
Impossible Figures and Other Stories I, dir. Marta Pajek
PIAFF- Paris International Animation Film Festival, 2022, France, 2022 – Award of the Vision
27th Vilnius International Film Festival “Kino pavasaris”, Lithuania, 2022 – Best Short Movie Award
Fury, dir. Julia Siuda
21st Short Film Festival SPASM, Canada, 2022 – Best Sound Design
My Fat Arse and I, dir. Yelyzaveta Pysmak
Linz International Short Film Festival 2022, Austria, 2022 – Best Editing
Insect, dir. Marcin Podolec
Athens Animafest, 2022, Greece, 2022 – Special Mention
I'm Here, dir. Julia Orlik
Slamdance FIlm Festival 2022, USA, 2022 – Grand Jury Winner
The End of Another Civilization of Arrogance, dir. Małgorzata Rybak
Screener Short Films, 2022, United Kingdom, 2022 – Honorable Mention
Prince in a Pastry Shop, dir. Katarzyna Agopsowicz
The Pigeon International Film Festival, Iceland, 2022 – Best Animated Picture
Misaligned, dir. Marta Magnuska
65th International Festival of Documentary and Animated Film DOK Leipzig, Germany, 2022 – Golden Dove – Best Short Animated Film
34th Aguilar Film Festival, 2022, Spain, 2022 – Best Animation Film
Love in Times of Coal-Based Economy, dir. Tomasz Siwiński
World Festival of Animated Film – Animafest Zagreb 2022, Croatia, 2022 – Special mention for the best Croatian minority co-production
13th ONE Country ONE Film International Festival, France, 2022 – Grand Prix du Jury: Best animated film
May The World Not Carry You, dir. Rozalia Las
Hollywood Reel Independent Film Festival, 2022, USA, 2022 – Best Animation
We Hope You Won't Need to Come Back, dir. Anastazja Naumenko
ABIFF - Animation Bucharest International Film Festival 2022, Romania, 2022 – The Best Thematic Film Award
Crumbs of Life, dir. Katarzyna Miechowicz
15th International Animation Festival Fest Anča, Slovakia, 2022 – The Special Recognition Award
Papa, dir. Maryia Yakimovich
Linz International Short Film Festival 2022, Austria, 2022 – Best Documentary
Slow Light, dir. Kijek/Adamski
15th International Animated Film Festival Animator, Poland, 2022 – Srebrny Animusz
20th Tirana International Film Festival 2022, Albania, 2022 – Best Animation Short Film
46th International Animated Film Festival Cinanima, Portugal, 2022 – Best Director
POFF Shorts 2022 International Short Film and Animation Festival, Estonia, 2022 – Jury Mention
This Will Not Be A Festival Film, dir. Julia Orlik
CinEast Central and Eastern European Film Festival in Luxembourg 2022 – Audience Award
Toothless, dir. Andrea Guizar
18th FEST - New Directors | New Films Festival 2022, Portugal, 2022 – Honorable Mention Silver Lynx Animation
63rd International Film Festival BRNO16, Czech Republic, 2022 – Honourable Mention
We Have One Heart, dir. Katarzyna Warzecha
The Pigeon International Film Festival, Iceland, 2022 – Best Directing
Green, dir. Karolina Kajetanowicz
Kaboom Animation Festival 2022, The Netherlands, 2022 – Best Jamie Bolio Award
*data collected based on information sent by producers, filmmakers, and festivals to Polish Animations. If you're aware of any international awards handed out to Polish animated short films not included on ths list, please contact us at firstname.lastname@example.org