- This May will be different. For the first time in its seventeen-year history, the Millennium Docs Against Gravity Film Festival will not take place shortly after the picnic. It is a unique situation for us as a long-term patron of the festival and for fans of doumental cinema - says Iwona Jarzębska, Director of the Public Relations Department of Bank Millennium. - However, we see new opportunities and possibilities in the limitation caused by cororavirus. Thanks to DOCS AGAINST ISOLATION, which is completely online, we can reach new audiences and get even more fans and viewers of documentary cinema. We will be present with the Festival not only in 6 major festival cities, but throughout Poland - adds Iwona Jarzębska.
The event, under the protection of the patron of the Bank Millennium Festival, was moved to the beginning of September (4-13.09.2020) and will take place in Warsaw, Gdynia, Wrocław, Katowice, Poznań and Bydgoszcz. However, already in May there will be a unique online event under the meaningful name DOCS AGAINST ISOLATION. On May 8-17, viewers will be waiting for: an exceptional selection of dozens of films, half of which will be available for free, live Q&A sessions with filmmakers and heroes, live concerts, DJ sets, recordings from creators and experts, and many unique archival materials from previous editions, as well as surprises that will be revealed gradually. Many films presented as part of the program will be available to view in open access on the Ninateka portal, thanks to cooperation with the National Film Archive - the Audiovisual Institute. All information will appear in the event: https://www.facebook.com/events/557955284854386/
Q&A sesions: Paweł Pawlikowski, Bing Liu, Eliza Kubarska
An important element of DOCS AGAINST ISOLATION will be Q&A sessions with recognized directors. There will be a live meeting with Paweł Pawlikowski, who will be the chairman of the jury during this year's Millennium Docs Against Gravity in September. The Oscar® winner will talk about his documentary output from which he started his career and about the values he is looking for in this genre of cinema. Event participants will have the opportunity to see selected documentary films of Pawlikowski in free access.
Eliza Kubarska is another outstanding director of documentary cinema who will be able to ask questions live. The meeting with her will be combined with a free screening of the movie "Badjao. Ghosts from the Sea” (premiere at the Millennium Docs Against Gravity in 2014, the film won a distinction in the Canon Competition for Best Photos), telling about the nomad community of the sea, fish-people living in the areas between the Philippines, Borneo and Indonesia. Kubarska will also talk about her latest film "Shadow Wall", which Polish premiere will take place during the Millennium Docs Against Gravity festival in September. This is a story about an extraordinary dangerous expedition to Kumbhakarna Mountain, shown from the perspective of Nepalese Sherpas, for whom this is a holy place and one of the most difficult to conquer the Himalayan peaks.
Another guest of DOCS AGAINST ISOLATION will be Bing Liu, director of the movie “Mind the Gap”, who in 2018 won four awards at the Millennium Docs Against Gravity festival, including the Bank Millennium Main Award, as well as an Oscar® nomination. His film is an unusual, very personal story of the director himself and his friends, for whom skateboarding has become a stepping stone from reality full of domestic violence and boring life in a deserted city in a poor region in Illinois in the USA. Bing Liu will talk during the meeting about the creation of this unique film, for which he collected materials for years, documenting his growing up.
All information about DOCS AGAINST ISOLATION will appear in the event: https://www.facebook.com/events/557955284854386/
Bank Millennium has been a partner of Millennium Docs Against Gravity for 15 years and a sponsor of the Bank Millennium Main Award for the best film. In 2016, he became titular patron of the festival. In 2019, during the 16th edition, the audience attendance record was broken. Over 92,000 viewers in six Polish cities: Warsaw, Wrocław, Gdynia, Katowice, Bydgoszcz and Lublin went to documentary screenings and events accompanying the Festival.
The Millennium Docs Against Gravity festival was on the list of 25 Most Cool Film Festivals in the World by MovieMaker Magazine. The main criterion used by eight panelists convened by the editors of MovieMaker Magazine was the relaxed atmosphere and "impression of effortlessness" they had in the case of festivals that were perfectly prepared and provided viewers with innovative cinema experiences at the highest level. MovieMaker Magazine is the leading source of information on the film industry in the USA and the most widely read independent magazine in the world.