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PRODUCTION Poland

Dorota Kedzierzawska, currently filming Speedway

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- The director’s latest film, starring Tomasz Zietek, is a KID Film production and will be distributed in Poland by Kino Swiat

Dorota Kedzierzawska, currently filming Speedway
Tomasz Zietek in Speedway

Strictly speaking, it wasn’t motorcycle racing per se that sparked the inspiration for Dorota Kędzierzawskas Speedway (Zuzel). Currently busy shooting, the director (who first appeared at Director’s Fortnight in 1994 with her feature debut, Crows, and later took part in the Berlinale in 2006 with I Am and in 2011 with Tomorrow Will Be Better), was actually prompted by a fascination for the more human, emotional side of the sport’s stars. “When I wrote the script, I didn’t draw inspiration from any one particular person, but rather brought together the different motivations of various figures from the world of speedway, and different elements from their lives. For me, the authenticity of the world I am portraying is hugely important,” she explained in a press conference devoted to her most recent project. 

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Speedway is a rite of passage film. Through the story of a young man named Lowa (Tomasz Zietek), the director aims to convey a sense of the violence of adolescence, with its rush of longing, passion, determination and readiness to take risks. When Lowa begins to compete in speedway races, it has a transformative effect on his character. In a world dominated by consumerism and the predilections of the masses, this young man discovers his own individuality and starts to fight for his freedom, represented by the motorcycle and the track in front of him. 

“Speedway racers have a type of personality that makes them very different to other people. They live in a different world, a different reality, and at a different rhythm. In five or ten years, they feel emotions that most people don’t experience at any point in their lives,” she added.

The film’s cast features Tomasz Zietek, Pawel Wilczak, Zaneta Labudzka, Mateusz Kosciukiewicz, new faces Jagoda Porebska and Karolina Golebiowska and various personalities from the world of Polish speedway. With a budget of €2.2 million, including €581,000 in funding from the Polish Film Institute, Speedway is being produced by KID Film, with Fogo, Canal+, Odra Film, Krakow Festival Office and Film Studio CeTA (Audiovisual Technology Centre) all co-producing. Kino Swiat will be in charge of distribution to Polish cinemas in October — coinciding with the end of the national speedway season.

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(Translated from French)

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