On February 14, Kuba Czekaj received the Baumi Script Development Award at the 67th Berlin IFF for the script to his feature film Sorry Polsko. The award was presented in Berlin.
The Baumi Award is an international film prize to commemorate Karl Baumgartner, founder and longtime head of Pandora Film, one of Germany's most renowned production and distribution houses. Karl Baumgartner produced films by such acclaimed directors as Emir Kusturica, Kim Ki-duk and Małgorzata Szumowska. The competition for the Baumi Award and 20,000 euros of development funding for the winning project is open to projects from around the world. The award was first presented at last year's Berlinale. The winner was Egyptian director and screenwriter Omar El Zohairy.
Members of the jury at this year's edition of the Baumi Award included: Reinhard Brundig - co-founder of Pandora Film; Martina Baumgartner - representing the family of the award patron; Petra Muller of Film- und Medienstiftung NRW, and a special guest at each edition, a world-class filmmaker. This year it is Aki Kaurismaki, acclaimed Finnish screenwriter, director and producer.
Kuba Czekaj's Sorry Polsko is developed by Magnet Man Film. The script is participating in the current edition of the ScripTeast programme, and has received development funding from the Polish Film Institute. "We hope that this award will help find co-production and distribution partners. This certainly marks a type of 'international quality certificate' for the project. We have a long way to go, but awards like this one are extremely motivating," says Małgorzata Sandecka of Magnet Man Film. Filming is scheduled to take place in 2018.
Kuba Czekaj is the director behind award-winning short films Ciemnego pokoju nie trzeba się bać (Don't Be Afraid of the Dark Room) and Twist & Blood. In 2015 he made his debut feature Baby Bump at the Biennale College-Cinema. His latest film Królewicz Olch (The Erlprince) is screening in the Generation section of this year's Berlinale. The film had its premiere at the 2016 Gdynia Film Festival.
Translated by Karolina Kołtun