2018 can be considered a really successful year. Polish animated films travelled around the world, starting with Berlin, Cannes, Leipzig, through Ottawa, Sydney, Auckland, to Hiroshima, Seoul and Bogota. In addition to film screenings, there were also industry meetings, film markets and reviews. Almost at every important film event dedicated to animation, you could find some Polish productions included in the programme. All the most important events which happened last year can be found in our summary. We would like to invite you to read it!

Polish short animated films were shown in over 530 screenings at almost 260 international film festivals, including 191 screenings in non-competing sections and as many as 333 in competitions, which brought them over 30 prestigious awards and special mentions. 

This year definitely belonged to women film-makers. The animated film "Pussy," directed by Renata Gąsiorowska, was again the most frequently shown animated film. This enormously popular production was included in the programme of almost 60 festivals. We would like to remind you that this animated film was made in 2016 and since its premiere, it enjoys great and almost unflagging popularity around the world. In the second place, there was the latest film by Marta Pajek. The animated film "III" was shown at 52 festivals, and its premiere was held in the competition at this year's Cannes festival. It is worth noticing that the previous part of the series, that is, "Impossible Figures and Other Stories II," is still shown and awarded a couple of years after its premiere. The third place on the podium in 2018 went to the film "Bless You!" directed by Paulina Ziółkowska. This animated film was shown at 32 festivals, and its premiere took place during last year's Berlinale, where the film won one of the awards.  The animated films with over 20 screenings are: "Oh, God!" by Betina Bożek and the film "The Other" by Marta Magnuska.

It turns out that the award won by Ziółkowska's film at the beginning of the year foreshadowed the year-long success of the film; in total, "Bless You!" scooped as many as seven important awards. "III" by Marta Pajek also received seven awards! The impressive number of the screenings of Gąsiorowska's film was not fruitless. The animated film "Pussy" won four awards last year.

Polish animated films were shown at the most prestigious festivals in the world. It is worthwhile to recall some of them. Before Paulina Ziółkowska received her award in Berlin, the Sundance festival took place in the second half of January. In the programme of the American event, three Polish short film productions were included in the competition, among them, the animated film "Black,"  directed by Tomasz Popakul.

In the world of short films, the beginning of February is immediately associated with the festival in Clermont Ferrand and the film market which accompanies the festival. The animated film by Renata Gąsiorowska was invited to last year's competition, and at the market, you could find the stall of the Polish Shorts, prepared by the Krakow Film Foundation.  In March, a large review of Polish short films was held at the festival in Tampere. The competition featured the film "Bernard" by Anna Oparkowska, and one of the three Polish sets was entirely dedicated to animated film. A lot of Polish productions could also be seen at Glas Animation. "Pussy" left the festival organised in Berkley with yet another award.  In April, many Polish films could be watched at German festivals, such as the Monstronale International Short Film Festival, the Filmfest Dresden and the Trickfilm, held in Stuttgart.

At the aforementioned festival in Cannes, as many as three Polish animated films appeared. In addition to the competition screening of "III," you could see the production "The Other" by Marta Magnuska in one of the most important sections.  The feature-length film "Another Day of Life," directed by Damian Nenow and Raúl de la Fuente had its special screening there.

At the turn of May and June, the 58th edition of the Krakow Film Festival was held.  11 animated films were invited to the Polish competition, and  "III" was included in the international competition. The film by Pajek was selected as the best Polish animated film of the festival.

If the event in Clermont Ferrand is the celebration of all short films, the festival in Annecy, held in June, is the paradise for animated film-makers. Every year, a record-breaking number of films is submitted, from among which"III" by Marta Pajek was invited to the main competition. In turn, in the student film competition, as many as five Polish animated films were included: "The Other by Marta Magnuska, "Squaring the Circle" by Karolina Specht, "Bless You!" by Paulina Ziółkowska, "Tango of Longing" by Marta Szymańska and "Oh God!" by Betina Bożek.

In July, there were two special events for night owls. The first one was organised under the motto of the Polish Short Film Night and it took place in far-away New Zealand, and the second one was much closer, just beyond the southern border of Poland, within the frames of the Slovakian film festival the Night at the Castle. In August, one of the most important festivals dedicated to animated films in Asia took place. To the competition at the 17th International Animated Film Festival in Hiroshima,  as many as seven Polish animated films were invited, and "XOXO – Hugs and Kisses" by Wiola Sowa left with the Special International Jury Prize.

The first autumnal months definitely belonged to Marta Pajek. Her "Impossible Figures and Other Stories II" together with "Pussy" by Renata Gąsiorowskia won the Special Mentions at the Ars Electronic, and "III" won the Special Mention at the French festival Silhouette, just before receiving yet another statuette at the ReAnima  in Bergen, Norway. The next awards came from Ottawa, where the film's amazing art was appreciated, and from the Romanian ANIM'EST.  The animated film was also included in the main competition at the Russian Message to Man, where the film "Oh God!" was triumphant.  The animated film by Betina Bożek was invited to the prestigious section "Amazing and Astounding" at the BFI.

The Grand Prix at the extremely important animated film festival BANJALUKA went to the film "Colaholic" bt Marcin Podolec. Four other Polish animated films were invited to Bosnia and Herzegovina -  "A New Day"    by Katarzyna Pieróg,  "REM"    by Artur Hanaj and "Squaring the Circle"  by Karolina Specht and  "Bless You!"  by Paulina Ziółkowska. This production also won the best student film award at the Hungarian festival Primanima.

The end of October and the beginning of November are associated with the festival in Leipzig and rightly so.  In the international competition Next Masters Competition, there was a place for as many as three Polish animated films - "Eatself" by Edyta Adamczak, "The Notebook" by Aleksandra Rylewicz and for the production "You Are Overreacting," directed by Karina Paciorkowska, which won the Special Mention there.  The DOK Leipzig was not the only place where you could watch Polish animated films.  As many as seven productions competed for the awards at the Mumia International Film Festival in Brazil, six at the Estonian PÖFF Shorts, five at the Etiuda&Anima in Krakow (the Silver Jabberwocky for "Squaring the Circle" by Karolina Specht) and four at the Canadian Montreal International Festival. There were also a couple of film reviews, among others, in Seoul at the festival Best Animation, at the Hungarian Anilogue or the Focus on Poland at the Leuven Short Film Festival. Within the frames of three screenings, the viewers of the Belgian festivals watched the award-winning Polish short productions and film studies by Roman Polański.

In December, three more awards went to Paulina Ziółkowska. Her "Bless You!" won the best animated film award at the festival Bilbao European School Zinema and a similar award at the BogoShorts, as well as the special mention of the Student Jury at the International Animated Film Festival in Ljubljana.  The main award at the Slovakian event went to Marta Pajek and her "III."

Let us not forget about the achievements of Polish feature-length animated films. After the enormous success of the film "Loving Vincent" by Dorota Kobiela and Hugh Welchman (the historic Academy Award nomination and the record-breaking viewership for a Polish production), it was time for "Another Day of Life".The animated film by Nenow and de la Fuente won the European Film Award, and before that, it conquered the hearts of the viewers in San Sebastian and of the jury of the Hungarian Anilogue International Animation Festival. 


The events organised or co-organised by the KFF were held thanks to the support of: the Polish Film Institute, the Krakow Festival Office, the Krakow Film Commission, as well as international partners: the DOK Leipzig, the Clermont-Ferrand, the Sundance Institute, Tampere FF, Leuven International Short Film Festival.


III, dir. Marta Pajek

Silhouette Film Festival 2018, France - Youth Jury Special Mention

ReAnima 2018 International Animation Film Festival Bergen, Norway - Best Professional Film

2018 Ottawa International Animation Festival, Canada - Best Design

13th ANIM'EST international animation film festival, Romania - Special Mention

15th Animateka International Animated Film Festival, Slovenia - Jury Grand Prix; DSAF Audience Award

Animafest Zagreb, 2018, Croatia - Special Award

Bless You!, reż. Paulina Ziółkowska

68th Berlinale International Film Festival, Germany - Special Mention

7th Primanima - World Festival of First Animations, Hungary - Best Student Film

Bilbao European Schools Zinema Fest 2018, Spain- Animation Prize

15th Animateka International Animated Film Festival, Slovenia - Student Jury Special Mention

Cinemaiubit International Student Film Festival, Romania - Best Animated Film

16th BOGOSHORTS - Bogotá Short Film Festival, Colombia - Saint Lucia for Best International Animated Short Film

Animafest Zagreb, 2018, Croatia - Special mention at the discretion of the Student Competition Jury

Colaholic, dir. Marcin Podolec

11th Banjaluka International Animation Festival, Bosnia and Herzegovina -  Grand Prix

Exit, dir. Jerzy Tabor

Un festival c’est trop court, France - Special Mention

Impossible Figures and other stories II, dir. Marta Pajek

Ars Electronica Festival 2018, Austria - Honorary Mention

Monument, dir. Marcin Giżycki

Fresh Stream Experimental Film Festival, USA - Best Experimental Animated Film

Veracruz Short Film Festival, USA - Best Experimental Film

Oh, God!, dir. Betina Bożek

 XXVIII Message to Man International Film Festival, Russia - Best Short Animation

Oh Mother!, dir. Paulina Ziółkowska

International Animation Film Festival Golden Kuker, 2018, Bulgaria - Grand Prix

Fest New Directors New Films 2018, Portugal - Melhor Curta - metragem de Animação

Pussy, reż. Renata Gąsiorowska

2018 GLAS Animation Festival, USA - Special Mention from Ruth Lingford

Ars Electronica Festival 2018, Austria - Honorary Mention

Metz Subversive Film Festival 2018, France - Best Short Film Award - Young Jury

17th SPASM Short Film Festival in Montreal, Canada - Best Animated Film

Strange Case, dir. Zbigniew Czapla

56th Ann Arbor Film Festival, USA - Audience Award

Stone Story, dir. Marcin Giżycki

Unprecedented Cinema, Estonia - Best Experimental Animated Film

Squaring the Circle, dir. Karolina Specht

25th International Film Festival Etiuda & Anima, Poland - Silver Jabberwocky

Tango of Longing, dir. Marta Szymańska

Cinanima 2018, Portugal - Special Mention

Theatrum Magicum, dir. Marcin Giżycki

Festival Internacional De Cine Del Imperio Inca w Limie, Peru - Best Experimental Short Film

The Wizard of U.S., dir. Balbina Bruszewska

Córtex Film Festival 2018, Portugal - Jury Prize International Competition

Vanilla/Whip, dir. Bogna Kowalczyk

Nachtschatten - BDSM / Fetish Film Festival 2018, Germany - Honorary Mention Award

You are Overreatcting, dir. Karina Paciorkowska

61st  International Leipzig Festival for Documentary and Animated Film – DOK Leipzig, Germany - Honorary Mention

XOXO - Hugs and Kisses, dir Wiola Sowa

17th International Animation Festival in Japan HIROSHIMA 2018, Japon - Special International Jury Prize

*data collected on the basis of the information received from producers, filmmakers and festivals by Polish Animations. If you know about any awards for Polish documentary films which are not included in this summary, please send this information to the editors of the portal: