Shooting for a new biographical film about Tadeusz Kantor began on 24th July 2015 in Kraków. The premiere is planned for April 2016.
The film will be directed by Jan Hryniak, known for films such as The Third, Trick and the prize-winning TV series Days of Honour: Uprising (it received an Orzeł, a lauded Polish film award). Shooting for the working title I Shall Never Return is taking place in Kraków. Tadeusz Kantor will be brought to life by Borys Szyc, a choice that will doubtlessly raise audience's curiosity. The actor is known for playing a mix of roles, in not only critically-praised Polish films such as Wojna Polsko-Ruska by Xawery Żuławski, Symmetry by Konrad Niewolski or The Mole by Rafael Lewandowski, but also popular comedies like Dżej Dżej, Sztos 2 and Kac Wawa.
Jan Hryniak said in an interview with Wacław Krupiński from the Dziennik Polski newspaper:
Borys grew up in the cult of Kantor, he knew a lot about him. His mother was Kantor's student at the Academy in Kraków, so Szyc was eager to take this role. He is great at expressing Kantor's character, temperament, inner jitters and at the same time he is not afraid of this role.
To be as similar to Tadeusz Kantor as possible, Szyc had to lose several kilos.
I Shall Never Return will show Tadeusz Kantor’s life story as a versatile artist: director, painter, performer and happening organiser. The film’s director Jan Hryniak commented: “Kantor is a brilliant artist – he is not very well-known, he is even a bit forgotten, although he used to be a world-renowned artist.”
The film will be shot in Kraków, but also in Tarnów where Kantor spent his youth; and in Paris, Florence and New York. Ryszard Melliwa, the rector of the Academy of Fine Arts in Kraków, responsible for the scenography for the film says:
Not all the locations from Kantor's times can be used nowadays, because they differ too much from what they used to look like, so we need to transfer some of the shots elsewhere. This kind of film is an enormous challenge, because I need to keep the scenography accurate to depict almost seven decades – the film shows the period between 1924 and 1990, but also times when Kantor was 6 years old.
The authors of the script are Łukasz M. Maciejewski (The Red Spider), Maciej Pisuk (You Are God), and the film’s director, Jan Hryniak. Supporting roles come from Paulina Puślednik, an actress from the Stary Teatr in Kraków, Agnieszka Podsiadlik and Jan Frycz. The music will be composed by Włodek Pawlik, the Grammy Award winner.
The premiere is scheduled for April 2016.
Sources: Dziennik Polski, edited by BS, July 2015; translated by ND, Oct 2015.