Past events

Andrzej Krakowski Presents: Munk, Has, Wajda and Polański, the incredible story of the Kamera Unit

Thursday, February 20, 2020, at 7:30pm


Join us at the Kosciuszko Foundation for a presentation about some of Poland's most renowned film directors, their smash-hit movies, and the unusual circumstances of their making which include fighting against censorship and the upper echelons of the communist government. Andrzej Krakowski, an awarded film producer, author, director takes us to an eye-opening and thought–provoking journey through the intrigues and exciting adventures that culminated in the creation of Knife in the Water, The Manuscript Found in Saragossa and many other hits in Poland's film industry.


Andrzej Krakowski Presents: 


Munk, Has, Wajda and Polański

- the incredible story of the Kamera Unit


Thursday, February 20, 7:30 p.m. 

The Kosciuszko Foundation: 15 E 65th Street, New York, NY 10065


Free and open to the public. In lieu of admission a $10 donation to the Kosciuszko Foundation is appreciated.   


In 1956-57, the Polish film industry was the first, among the Eastern European countries, to undergo a period of reorganization and decentralization. The Central Office of Cinema has been liquidated and seven new film companies called Units, independent of each other, were created. Appointed as Artistic Directors of the respective studios were eminent directors such as Aleksander Ford, Jan Rybkowski, Jerzy Kawalerowicz. The Heads of Production, became experienced managers, pre-war producers such as Ludwik Hager, Zygmunt Król, Edward Zajicek and Wiktor Budzyński. Suddenly, in a country controlled with an iron fist by the communist party and raging censorship, Polish filmmakers gained a relative freedom of expression that the creators in other countries of the Soviet Bloc were not allowed. But something was still wrong. After a year, the authorities decided to create yet another Unit. They named it Kamera. Its founder was a director who never directed a feature film, and the Head of Production became a man who never produced a single film. And suddenly several eminent artists who could have choosen the studio in which they would like to work, such as Munk, Has, Wajda, Polański, Skolimowski, Hoffman, Konwicki, Hen, Majewski, Żuławski, Lesiewicz or the Petelskisl, as well as many others decided, and despite protests of their current employers, eventually moved to the new studio.

About the making of such films as A Bad Luck (Zezowate Szczęście), A Passenger (Pasażerka), How to be Loved (Jak byc kochaną), The Manuscript Found in Saragossa (Rękopis znaleziony w Saragossie), Everything For Sale (Wszystko na sprzedaż), Knife in the Water (Nóż w wodzie), Barrier and Hands Up (Bariera i Ręce do Góry), Mr. (Pan) Wołodyjowski and many others; about intrigues and adventures, fights against censorship and the upper echelons of the communist government, and about the sad, final fate of the Kamera Unit, I will tell on February 20, 2020. And I was a direct witness of those events.

Andrzej Krakowski


Andrzej Krakowski - Professor of Screenwriting and Producing at the City College of NY, awarded film producer, author and director. His production of a 10-episode dramatic TV series titled We Are New York won two Emmy Awards in 2010. MORE

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