Botoxx tops the 2017 Polish box-office with two million admissions
by Ola Salwa
- Director Patryk Vega has been doing exceedingly well financially with his recent films and plans to tell stories from a woman’s perspective from now on
Botoxx [+see also:
film profile] by Patryk Vega has already broken a number of box-office records: with 711,906 admissions, the movie had the best opening weekend of 2017, and the second best of any film in the last 30 years. After six days in theatres, over one million viewers had watched the medical drama-thriller, and it has now racked up two million admissions after almost a month on release. In addition, the movie is making big bucks – and not only in the local market. With $1.34 million in takings, it's currently the most popular non-English-language film screened this year in the UK. “It's the most widely distributed contemporary Polish film,” says Radosław Konder, of Phoenix Production LLC, the international distributor of Botoxx, as well as Planet Single [+see also:
film profile], The Art of Loving [+see also:
film profile] and the Pitbull [+see also:
film profile] series. “Botoxx will be presented in at least 15 countries on four continents. Most of the screenings have been fully booked within a few hours,” he adds. So far, Vega’s new film has been shown in the USA, Canada, Austria, Germany, Belgium, the Netherlands, Iceland, Luxembourg, Norway and Australia. “More deals are in progress,” says Konder.
Botoxx revolves around four female medical professionals, and as Vega tells Cineuropa, it is 100% based on true stories. “I was educated in cultural sociology and journalism, and I have a background in documentary filmmaking,” says the writer-director, who also has a producer's credit on the movie, through Vega Investments. “When I start working on a film, I surround myself with people who work in the environment I will be showing – for example, police officers or doctors. I record hours-long interviews, then I pick the best dialogues and the stories that moved me,” adds Vega, whose two most recent films, both instalments in the Pitbull series, topped the local box office in 2016. “I am one of the few Polish producers who don’t use public money. I work according to a system similar to the American one – I have investors putting their funds in my films, and if it doesn’t make a profit, I can’t find money for the next project. In that sense, I am ‘worth as much as my last film’,” he explains. He adds that another reason why his films are so successful is because he mixes a few genres together, instead of picking only one. “The Polish audience is not interested in ‘just an action film’,” says the Botoxx helmer.
He also states that the fact that it is usually women who make the decision about which movie to see helped the female character-driven Pitbull: Dangerous Women [+see also:
film profile] and Botoxx to improve their box-office figures. “All of my upcoming films will present a woman’s perspective, which I find fascinating,” says Vega, who called Cineuropa from the set of his new production, entitled Mafia Women (Kobiety mafii). The film is set for a 2018 release, and the director claims that he is working on four different projects and has a jam-packed schedule until 2020.
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