Sunday, November 26, 2023 marked the end of the SPA Script Pitching Academy screenwriting workshop – which were a part of the international youth exchange. Young filmmakers from Poland, France, Norway and Ukraine took part in the project.
During SPA Script Pitching Academy, young people from four European countries had the opportunity to work in international groups, preparing film projects, which they eventually presented in front of experts during a pitch meeting.
This time the main theme of the workshop was working on a film script. In addition to developing their screenwriting skills, the young filmmakers also learned about the importance of networking and promoting their own works on the international film market. They also had the opportunity to consult their ideas, which they work on every day, in a cross-cultural group. Experts, including such professionals as Michal Oleszczyk, Marcin Ciastoń and Anna Dziedzic, praised the creative energy and professional approach of the participants. The project leaders were also impressed.
– The level of the workshop was extremely high. Most of the participants are already working in the film industry and their approach was very serious. They were very active during the lectures and sincerely appreciated the knowledge and experience of the presenters – said Anna Andriushchenko, coordinator of the exchange.
The words of the coordinator were confirmed by the workshop participants themselves. As Naoki Kawai, an exchange participant from Norway, wrote:
– What I loved about this workshop in particular, is that it gave us the opportunity to pitch, discuss and learn from likeminded people with unique backgrounds and cultures different from your own, whilst knowing that we all have a common need – the need communicate through the art of filmmaking.
Michal Kurowski, who has previously participated in youth exchanges organized by the Kosmopolis Institute, has a similar opinion.
– I still catch breath from the SPA workshop, ideas’ influxes, crazy cheap dinners, toilet-queue chats, discussions, throat wars, windy snow wars, wearing a tracksuit, smuggling Life of Boris into the final presentation and juggling with four languages (without not really knowing one of them). The same as with Olsztyn: photos don’t do full justice to the atmosphere and adventures of that week. But no photo could. These are a great approximation: after all, the people are most important – he posted on Instagram.
Ousmane Kouyate of France, who has been involved in similar exchanges many times, also agrees with them:
– As a member of the French group at the week-long SPA (Script Pitching Academy) workshop in Warsaw, Poland, I’ve experienced the dynamic collaboration within mixed groups representing four different countries: Poland, France, Ukraine, and Norway. This enriching multicultural environment not only made the event enjoyable but also facilitated a profound learning experience. The workshop successfully blended fun and education, offering valuable insights into scriptwriting and creating lasting connections among participants from diverse backgrounds. Personally, it was an eye-opening journey, both professionally and culturally.
For Anna Zhytko, a participant from Ukraine, the SPA workshop was the first experience of this kind. She appreciated not only the SPA itself, but also the Cinemaforum festival, which the project accompanied:
– I really like events like film screenings or film festivals. For me, the trip to SPA to Warsaw was unforgettable, it was interesting to listen to the lectures and work on the presentation. Everyone was friendly and kind. I hope that I will have the opportunity to take part in such workshops more than once, because it is a great experience for me, especially since I am interested in the world of cinema – she summed up her participation in the project.
The SPA Script Pitching Academy workshop accompanied the 22nd edition of CINEMAFORUM, an event aimed at young filmmakers from around the world. It was another opportunity to develop artistic passions and motivations, as well as to increase intercultural awareness and strengthen European dialogue among young filmmakers.
The Script Pitching Academy project is organized by KOSMOPOLIS Institute – Foundation for Science, Culture and Education in Olsztyn.
The project is co-financed by the European Union.
The main partner of the event is the Andrzej Wajda Centre For Film Culture in Warsaw.
Educational partners include: FILMFORUM Association (Poland), Kinematographe (France), Stiftelsen Amandusfestivalen (Norway), and CinemaHall (Ukraine).
The industry partner of the project is Crew United Poland.