The Jury of the Short Feature Competition at the 23rd FilmFestival Cottbus, which came to an end on 10th November, awarded the Main Prize to Maria Zbąska for her “Brother Dog”. The film was co-produced by the Munk Studio, which operates under the auspices of the Polish Filmmakers Association (PFA), and the Wajda Studio.

The jury awarded the prize for: switching styles, ironic play on national symbols, and surprising moments of comedy combine in a sincere coming-of-age story. Two brothers living in Polish neighborhood blocks are trying to manage family preparations for Christmas against the harsh reality on the streets of Warsaw. The sudden menace of the film ́s climax, and its strong, well-judged ending are solid proof of the director ́s talent and leave us eager to see her upcoming films.

The 2,500 euro prize was funded by the Cottbus-based Druckzone commercial print company.

The central character of the film, which is a loose adaptation of a short story by Etgar Keret, is Panabi, a young teenage boy who lives on a high-rise estate in Warsaw. Bocian, the biggest thug on the estate, rules the roost and, as usually happens, the prettiest girl is his. Bad luck means that, for Panabi’s brother, she’s ‘the one’. Christmas is coming and to Panabi, that always spells imminent catastrophe. The cast includes Rafał Garnecki, Marek Kossakowski, Agnieszka Krukówna, Andrzej Chyra and Krzysztof Skonieczny.

“Brother Dog”, one of the latest Munk Studio-PFA-Wajda Studio co-productions, was made in collaboration with Ucho Studio, Luks Films and Timecode. Before its success at the Cottbus, the film had already garnered special mentions at the Gdynia Film Festival and the Warsaw Jewish Film Festival.

The Cottbus Festival of East European Cinema took place from 5th to 10th November. In addition to “Brother Dog”, another Munk Studio production, “Chicken”, directed by thirty-year-old Aleksandra Terpińska, was screened in the U18 – German-Polish Youth Film Competitions. The foreign promotion of Chicken and Brother Dog is supported by the Krakow Film Foundation.

More on the film can be found at the official Munk Studio website

Source: Polish Filmmakers Association – Munk Studio

In the picture above – Maria Zbąska and a cinematographer Krzysztof Wiśniewski with the jurry members/ ph. Film Festival Cottbus