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Hoffman borrowed PLN 170 billion for “With Fire and Sword”.  No one has beaten his result to this day

Hoffman borrowed PLN 170 billion for “With Fire and Sword”. No one has beaten his result to this day

Exactly 25 years have passed since the premiere of “With Fire and Sword”, so on this occasion we will talk about the behind-the-scenes of the creation of this cult film. Moreover, in the latest episode of “POPKultura” we will also talk about what is interesting on various streaming services this month and what to pay special attention to and why you should watch the new “Rojst” in the first place.

“Millenium” is the third and, unfortunately, last season of the series “Rojst” directed by Jan Holoubek. The action of the latest season takes place two years after the events of the previous series and this time the whole story will begin with the excavation of a mysterious skeleton in the forest in Gronty. As usual, it turns out that the secrets from the past will not be forgotten, meanwhile Zarzycki (Dawid Ogrodnik) and Anna Jass (Magdalena Różczka) will have to face extremely dangerous people in order to save someone extremely important to them. All six episodes of the series will land on Netflix on February 28. Fans of Japan, samurai and swords should be interested in the film adaptation of James Clavell’s novel, available on Disney+. “Shogun”. Listen to more about the premieres in the latest episode of “POPKultura”:

The quite charming movie “The Marvels” has also recently been released on Disney+. Although it did not do well in cinemas, Joanna Chojnacka in her text for Kultura.gazeta.pl notes that the film “was hit in the pocket disproportionately to its crimes. It is great entertainment, full of charm, warmth and wise humor. And Kamala Khan absolutely shines on the screen and is a long-awaited breath of fresh air for the universe. As in many recent Marvel productions – there is a lack of refinement. This time the script is weak, but not so much as to take away the pleasure of watching it. We confirm and wish you have fun.

He cast the Bond girl and regretted that she had so little to play. “She pulled a nice trick on us”

After years of preparations and expectations, “” was released on February 8, 1999. The implementation of the project was associated with terrible financial risk, including for Jerzy Hoffman, who mortgaged his apartment, a house in Masuria and a car just to have something to make money on. In one of the interviews, Wiktor Zborowski (Podbipina in the film) noted that previously filmmakers believed that the money came from the post office. “Some people said: I’m a filmmaker, I don’t care whether the audience comes or not. I’m making a film… It can’t be like this anymore. Jerzy Hoffman took on this responsibility – he borrowed PLN 170 billion [przed denominacją – przyp. red.]to shoot ‘With Fire and Sword'”. It was also the first time in the history of Polish cinema when a bank gave a loan for a film, and luckily there were sponsors. Ultimately, the film adaptation of Henryk Sienkiewicz’s prose turned out to be a huge success – it was watched by 7,151,354 people, thanks to which, 25 years after its premiere, the film is still in first place on the list of Polish productions with the highest viewership after 1989.

The crew worked on the set of “With Fire and Sword” for 118 days and used 130 km of film. Hoffman really put a lot of effort into it and, for example, hired Machine Shop to perform special effects. This company has previously worked on films such as “Braveheart” and “Terminator 2”. It is easy to understand that when Bogusław Linda gave up playing Bohun three weeks before the start of filming in favor of Father Robak and “Pan Tadeusz”, things could have gotten tense. The director’s wife came up with the idea that maybe Michał Żebrowski would change the character of Skrzetuski, but he had been preparing for half a year and firmly refused. Fortunately, Walentyna Hoffman found another solution. She spotted Aleksander Domogarov in the Russian series ‘Grafini de Monsoreau’ by Alexandre Dumas.

“Fire and sword”. Casting wasn’t easy at all

Hoffman himself laughed a bit that finding the right actor to play Skrzetuski was not an easy task, but luckily Żebrowski had everything needed. The director does not hide the fact that sometimes he found it difficult to work with the actor. On the book “After Me Even the Flood” the filmmaker describes:

We are shooting the scene of Skrzetuski leaving Zbaraż, sneaking through the swamps. It’s night, cold. And Michał suddenly shouts to me from the water: ‘What am I thinking about now, as Skrzetuski?’ I replied that it was about a girl, because what the hell was I supposed to tell him. Besides, I used to discourage such whims from him. Moreover, Michał had a terrible support in the form of Sasha Domogarov.

Ultimately, their on-screen rivalry turned out great. Interestingly, Krzysztof Kowalewski was not the first candidate to play Zagłoba. Jerzy Hoffman dreamed of Janusz Gajos playing this role. However, the actor was afraid that if he gained weight for the role, he would not be able to lose it later, so he refused. Hoffman commented: “I don’t regret it. His Zagłoba is like Shakespeare’s Falstaff. Although maybe Kowalewski was a better Roch Kowalski than Zagłoba,” he described.

– It seems to me that Jerzy Hoffman is today a combination of two symbolic figures: one real, the other literary. This is a connection between Henryk Sienkiewicz and Zagłoba. His wisdom, wit, and accuracy of expression are an absolutely unique source – it will probably never happen again in history. I am extremely grateful to him for reaching out to me to do it. Of course, I read “With Fire and Sword” again, much more carefully than in high school – . He also told us an interesting fact: the song was originally supposed to be sung by Helena in the film. – So I wrote it for Izabella Scorupco, but she didn’t agree. That is: she said she couldn’t cope, even though I believed in her vocal skills. And then the Pomaton EMI record label chose Edyta Górniak and Mietek Szcześniak, who sang the final version – the creator of the lyrics of the cult hit described to us.

Source: Gazeta

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