Bartosz Bielenia takes hostages in Jakub Piątek’s Prime Time
by Ola Salwa
- Prime Time, “a fantasy about revolt and rebellion” is the feature debut from Jakub Piątek, who also co-wrote the script
Film sets in Poland re-opened weeks ago with film crews working under sanitary restrictions and pausing if any case of coronavirus is detected. A few productions have already wrapped shooting, including Prime Time, the feature debut from Jakub Piątek, with Bartosz Bielenia (Corpus Christi [+see also:
interview: Bartosz Bielenia
interview: Jan Komasa
film profile]) playing the lead.
The story is set on New Year’s Eve 1999, in a pre-YouTube and pre-Instastory era, when television was pretty much the only platform able to reach millions. Sebastian (Bielenia) wants to use it for his own purpose and breaks into a television studio, then holds a famous TV personality (Magdalena Popławska, Panic Attack [+see also:
interview: Pawel Maslona
film profile], 53 Wars [+see also:
interview: Ewa Bukowska
film profile]) at gunpoint. He threatens to shoot her and the security guard (Andrzej Kłak) if he doesn’t get his own live broadcast. “Prime Time is a fantasy about revolt and rebellion. Just before the explosion of Web popularity and the birth of YouTube, there were numerous incidents of people breaking into TV studios during live programmes around the world,” says writer-director Jakub Piątek in the press release. He adds that the plot wasn’t based on a specific incident but draws inspiration from many different cases.
Piątek co-wrote script with Łukasz Czapski; the duo developed it at Torino Film Lab Extended 2019 and won for a Honorable Mention in the Script Pro 2019 competition. The crew also includes Michał Łuka (DoP), Katarzyna Jędrzejczyk (production designer), Jarosław Kamiński, Urszula Klimek-Piątek (editors), Hanna Podraza (costume designer), Janusz Kaleja (make-up artist) and Krzysztof Terej (supervising producer).
Prime Time is produced by Jakub Razowski through Warsaw-based Watchout Productions (Gods [+see also:
film profile], The Art of Loving [+see also:
film profile], The Coldest Game [+see also:
interview: Łukasz Kośmicki
film profile]), and co-produced by Polish private broadcaster TVN. Production was backed by the Polish Film Institute. Local theatrical release is set for autumn 2021 with distributor Next Film on board, while the international rights are still up for grabs.
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