Lukasz Palkowski shoots Najlepszy
by Dorota Hartwich
- The director of Gods is working on his new film, a story where a drug addict finds redemption in sport, starring Jakub Gierszal
Lukasz Palkowski, the director of Gods [+see also:
film profile] (No.1 at the Polish box-office in 2014, winner of the Grand Prix at the Gdynia Festival in the same year, and winner of seven Eagles at the Polish Film Awards in 2015) is currently shooting Najlepszy (lit. The Best) with a brilliant cast featuring Jakub Gierszal (The Lure [+see also:
interview: Agnieszka Smoczyńska
film profile], Spoor [+see also:
interview: Agnieszka Holland
interview: Zofia Wichlacz
film profile]), Arkadiusz Jakubik (Hatred [+see also:
film profile], I’m a Killer [+see also:
interview: Maciej Pieprzyca
interview: Renata Czarnkowska-Listos a…
film profile]), Tomasz Kot (Gods), Janusz Gajos, Artur Zmijewski, Adam Woronowicz and Magdalena Cielecka.
Once again, the filmmaker takes on the story of an extraordinary character, who stands out thanks to superhuman strength that allows him to reach the heights of success while, as the same time, fighting his own weaknesses. In Gods, Lukasz Palkowski presented a moving portrait of the surgeon Zbigniew Religa who performed Poland’s first heart transplant. In Najlepszy, he narrates the true story of Jerzy Górski, who broke a world record but is, nevertheless, practically unknown in Poland. This sportsman first ran the Western States 100-Mile Endurance Race in June 1990 and a 100-mile ultra-marathon in Sierra Nevada, California, before setting a new world record in a triathlon on 3 September 1990 by completing the Double Ironman of Huntsville in Alabama in 24h 7min and 46s.
What makes the story of Górski’s success very unique is the life that came before it. In fact, he began his career as an athlete at the age of 30, after 14 years as a drug addict. The change occurs when he finds himself in a life-threatening crisis (he weighs no more than 49 kilos, regularly takes heroin and smokes 100 cigarettes per day) and gets admitted into a rehab centre where he starts to treat his addiction. As part of his therapy, he starts running. But his victory would have been impossible had it not been for two women he meets and who end up being a source of inspiration.
Produced by Iron Films, Najlepszy is co-produced by Polsat, Lutetia, Cavatina Studio, Odra Film and Monternia. The budget of 2.1 million euros includes a grant of 830,000 euros from the Polish Film Institute. Slated for 17 November 2017, the release of the film in Polish cinemas will be managed by Mówi Serwis.
(Translated from French)
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