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CPH PIX to celebrate the Polish auteur and enfant terrible Andrzej Zulawski

 

ANDRZEJ ZULAWSKI - CPH PIX CELEBRATES PROVOCATIVE SURREALIST

This year CPH PIX celebrates a great individualist the Polish auteur and enfant terrible Andrzej Zulawski, who portrays the extreme highs and lows of love and passion with such an undeniable energy and distinct style. His entire body of work will be screened for the very first time in Denmark during the festival and the director himself will visit Copenhagen to personally introduce his films to the Danish audience.

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Boundary pushing director
Polish-born Andrzej Zulawski is a controversial figure in many respects but for many years it has been all but impossible to see a large portion of his films due to grave censorship problems in his home country.

In collaboration with the Danish Cinemateque, CPH PIX presents a complete retrospective dedicated to this unique European filmmaker - a visionary when it comes to melodrama as a genre.

Polish controversies
With the camera as a surgical scalpel, Zulawski dissects the basic human conditions - when love renders man exposed and unprotected. Thus equilibrium is a state of mind rarely achieved by the characters in his films.

From the point of his debut feature film, the visionary Third Part of the Night (1971), Zulawski was hailed as the new international hope of Polish filmmaking but already after his second feature, Diabel (1972), the situation changed radically. The Polish censorship banned the film claiming it was a direct attack on public policy and the infiltration of the Polish youth revolt by the authorities. The film was quickly confiscated and put on ice for almost two decades.

As a result Zulawski emigrated to France where he made his first French feature, the art-house hit L'important c'est d'aimer (That Most Important Thing: Love) in 1975, for which Romy Schneider won the prestigious César Award for Best Actress.

Lost sci-fi masterpiece
Thanks to his success abroad, Zulawski was invited back to Poland where he, with a colossal budget to his disposal, was assigned the mission to compete against the international box office smash hits Kubrick's 2001: A Space Odyssey and Tarkovsky's Solaris. Unfortunately during the shooting of the great On the Silver Globe the political stance was reversed due to ministerial changes and the production of what should have been the most prestigious Polish production ever, was immediately suspended only a few days before shooting was completed. Worst of all, the entire set design and the negative were destroyed.

However more than a decade later, Zulawski had the opportunity to edit and finalize the film from material secretly hidden and stashed away by dedicated members of the film crew. Even in this truncated version, which CPH PIX will screen in a rare 35mm copy, it is clear that The Silver Globe belongs in the same league as both Space Odyssey and Solaris.

In France
The heavy censorship controversies surrounding The Silver Globe made Zulawski settle in France for good and permanently turn his back on his country. In France, he directed a number of unique feature films focused on the emotional distress caused by love e.g. the doppelganger drama Possession (1981) starring Isabel Adjani and the many films featuring Sophie Marceau starting with the Dostoyevsky-adaptation L'amour braque (1985).

With these films Zulawski proves time and time again that his intense work with his female characters brings out exceptional career-making performances.

The retrospective is presented in collaboration with the Danish Cinemateque in Copenhagen.

The full programme will be announced tomorrow at the CPH PIX programme launch and will be available at http://www.cphpix.dk/ from March 17.

CPH PIX PROGRAMME LAUNCH TOMORROW MARCH 16
- and world-premiere of punk-art video work by artists Michael Kvium & Christian Lemmerz

The CPH PIX festival period is to kick off on March 16 with the world-premiere of a rare, once lost punk-art video work, Flow My Firetear, by provocative artist-duo Michael Kvium and Christian Lemmerz in coorperation with the Danish art-punkband Sort Sol - in celebration of this year's special punk-series. At the programme launch PIX reveals the entire programme for 2011 and the third edition of Denmark's international festival for features takes place in Copenhagen from April 14 to May 1. The programme can be found on our - for the occasion - completely redesigned website http://www.cphpix.dk/ from March 17.

Flow My Firetear (1992) is an album-length artistic music-video for the Sort Sol-album by the same name - it is a rare, disturbing and historically important intersection between punk music and video-art and was nearly lost forever. For unknown reasons, the original raw footage was considered destroyed but was fortunately relocated buried in a storage facility - the piece in its entirety has never been shown to the public and has now been re-edited for the PIX programme launch.

The event is presented in collaboration witn artFREQ.

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