Paweł Aleksander Pawlikowski
15 September 1957
|Alma mater||Oxford University|
Paweł Aleksander Pawlikowski (Polish: [ˈpavɛw alɛˈksandɛr pavliˈkɔfskʲi]; born 15 September 1957) is a Polish filmmaker, who has lived and worked most of his life in the United Kingdom. He garnered acclaim for a string of award-winning documentaries in the 1990s and for his feature films Last Resort and My Summer of Love, both of which won a BAFTA and many other European awards. His film Ida won the 2015 Academy Award for Best Foreign Language Film. At the 2018 Cannes Film Festival, Pawlikowski won the Best Director prize for his 2018 film Cold War, a film which also earned him a nomination for the Academy Award for Best Director and Best Foreign Language Film.
Pawlikowski was born in Warsaw, Poland, to a father who was a doctor and a mother who started as a ballet dancer and later became an English literature professor at the University of Warsaw. In his late teens, he learned that his paternal grandmother was Jewish and had died in Auschwitz. At the age of 14, he left communist Poland with his mother for London. What he thought was a holiday turned out to be a permanent exile. A year later he moved to Germany, before finally settling in Britain in 1977. He studied literature and philosophy at Oxford University.
In the late 1980s and 1990s, Pawlikowski was best known for his documentaries, whose blend of lyricism and irony won him many fans and awards around the world. From Moscow to Pietushki was a poetic journey into the world of the Russian cult writer Venedikt Erofeev, for which he won an Emmy, an RTS award, a Prix Italia and other awards. The multi-award-winning Dostoevsky's Travels was a tragi-comic road movie in which a St Petersburg tram driver—and the only living descendant of Fyodor Dostoevsky—travels rough around Western Europe haunting high-minded humanists, aristocrats, monarchists and the Baden-Baden casino in his quest to raise money to buy a secondhand Mercedes.
Pawlikowski's most original and formally successful film was Serbian Epics (1992), made at the height of the Bosnian War. The oblique, ironic, imagistic, at times almost hypnotic study of epic Serbian poetry, with exclusive footage of Radovan Karadžić and General Ratko Mladić, aroused a storm of controversy and incomprehension at the time, but has now secured it something of a cult status. The absurdist Tripping with Zhirinovsky, a surreal boat journey down the Volga with controversial Russian politician Vladimir Zhirinovsky, won Pawlikowski the Grierson Award for the Best British Documentary in 1995.
Pawlikowski's transition to fiction occurred in 1998 with a small 50-minute hybrid film Twockers, a lyrical and gritty love story set on a sink estate in Yorkshire, which he co-wrote and co-directed with Ian Duncan. In 2001 he wrote and directed Last Resort with Dina Korzun and Paddy Considine, which won a BAFTA, the Michael Powell Award for Best British Film at Edinburgh and many other awards. In 2004 he wrote and directed My Summer of Love with Emily Blunt and Natalie Press, which won a BAFTA, the Michael Powell Award for Best British Film and many other awards.
In 2006, he filmed about 60% of his adaptation of Magnus Mills' The Restraint of Beasts when the project was halted—his wife had fallen gravely ill and he left to care for her and their children. In 2011, he wrote and directed a film loosely adapted from Douglas Kennedy's novel The Woman in the Fifth, starring Ethan Hawke and Kristin Scott Thomas.
On 19 October 2013, his film Ida (starring Agata Kulesza) won the Best Film Award at the London Film Festival, on the same night that Anthony Chen, one of his students at the National Film and Television School, won the Sutherland Prize for the Best First Film, for Ilo Ilo. Ida won the 2015 Academy Award for Foreign Language Film on 23 February 2015, the first Polish film to do so. In the same year, he was a member of jury headed by Alfonso Cuarón at the 72nd Venice International Film Festival.
In 2017, Pawlikowski adapted Emmanuel Carrère's biographical novel Limonov (2011), based on the life of Eduard Limonov, into a screenplay. Pawlikowski planned to direct the film adaptation but revealed in 2020 that he lost interest in the character and abandoned plans to direct.
His most recent film, Cold War earned him the Best Director Award at the 2018 Cannes Film Festival. It also won five awards at the 2018 European Film Awards including Best Film, Best Director and Best Actress Awards. In 2019, he was announced as one of the members of the jury at the Cannes Film Festival.
Pawlikowski was a Creative Arts Fellow at Oxford Brookes University from 2004 to 2007. He teaches film direction and screenwriting at the National Film School in the UK and the Wajda Film School in Warsaw. In addition to his native Polish, he speaks six languages including German and Russian.
Pawlikowski's first wife, who was Russian, developed a serious illness in 2006 and died several months later. They have a son and a daughter. After his children left for university, Pawlikowski moved to Paris, and later relocated to Warsaw, where he lives close to his childhood home. At the end of 2017, he married Polish model and actress Małgosia Bela.
|1987||Open Space||Yes||No||No||TV Documentary Series|
|1990||From Moscow to Pietushki with Benny Yerofeyev||Yes||Yes||No||TV Movie Documentary|
|1994||Tripping with Zhirinovsky||Yes||No||Yes|
|1998||Twockers||Yes||Yes||Yes||Co-directed with Ian Duncan|
|1998||The Stringer||Yes||Yes||No||Feature Film|
|2004||My Summer of Love||Yes||Yes||No|
|2011||The Woman in the Fifth||Yes||Yes||No|
|2014||Lost in Karastan||No||Yes||No|
Awards and nominations
|2015||Best Foreign Language Film||Ida||Won|
|2019||Best Director||Cold War||Nominated|
|Best Foreign Language Film||Nominated|
British Academy Film Awards
|2001||Best British Film||Last Resort||Nominated|
|Most Promising Newcomer||Won|
|2005||Best British Film||My Summer of Love||Won|
|2014||Best Film Not in the English Language||Ida||Won|
|2018||Best Direction||Cold War||Nominated|
|Best Original Screenplay||Nominated|
|Best Film Not in the English Language||Nominated|
Golden Globe Awards
|2015||Best Foreign Language Film||Ida||Nominated|
European Film Awards
|1992||Best Documentary||Dostoyevsky’s Travels||Special Mention|
|2001||European Discovery||Last Resort||Nominated|
|2005||Best Film||My Summer of Love||Nominated|
|People's Choice Award||Won|
|2018||Best Film||Cold War||Won|
Polish Film Awards
|2006||Best European Film||My Summer of Love||Won|
|2019||Best Film||Cold War||Won|
British Independent Film Awards
|2000||Best Director||Last Resort||Nominated|
|2004||Best Director||My Summer of Love||Nominated|
|2014||Best Foreign Independent Film||Ida||Nominated|
Film festivals and other award ceremonies
|2013||38th National Polish Film Festival||Golden Lions for Best Film||Ida||Won|
|2014||30th Seattle International Film Festival||Best Director||3rd runner-up|
|2015||72nd Golden Globe Awards||Best Foreign Language Film||Nominated|
|2018||71st Cannes Film Festival||Best Director||Cold War||Won|
|2018||43rd National Polish Film Festival||Golden Lions for Best Film||Won|
|2014||9th Dublin Film Critics' Circle Awards||Best Director||Ida||#3|
|2014||Indiewire 2014 Year-End Critics Poll||Best Director||#10|
|2019||39th London Film Critics' Circle Awards||Best Director||Cold War||Nominated|||
- Hoberman, J. (30 April 2014). "If You Could Lick My Heart It Would Poison You". Table. Retrieved 22 October 2017.
- "Kto Ty jesteś? Paweł Pawlikowski o filmie "Ida"" (in Polish). Onet.pl. 18 October 2014. Retrieved 28 February 2015.
- Bloom, Livia (5 May 2014). "Courage of Conviction: A Conversation with Ida Director Pawel Pawlikowski". Filmmaker. Retrieved 28 February 2015.
- Screenonline. Accessed 2014-05-26. The title of Erofeev's novel (or prose poem) has been variously translated, but Pawlikowski's documentary is in English and is titled in English.
- Pawlikowski, Pawel. "Filmography". Pawel Pawlikowski – Writer and Director. pawelpawlikowski.co.uk. Archived from the original on 5 September 2017. Retrieved 26 May 2014.
- "A Quick Chat With Pawel Pawlikowski". kamera.co.uk. Archived from the original on 6 March 2009.
- Dawtrey, Adam (20 September 2007). "Pawel Pawlikowski takes on Stalin". Variety. Retrieved 21 March 2011.
- "Ethan Hawke, Kristin Scott Thomas top 'Women' – Thesps to star in indie thriller based on novel". Variety.
- "Master and Pupil honoured by LFF on the same night". UK Screen. 20 October 2013.
- Vivarelli, Nick (29 December 2017). "Pawel Pawlikowski, Director of Oscar-Winning 'Ida,' to Helm 'Limonov' (EXCLUSIVE)". Variety. Retrieved 5 July 2020.
- "Paweł Pawlikowski nie wyreżyseruje "Limonova"". Onet.pl. 15 May 2020. Retrieved 5 July 2020.
- "Exciting Jury Announced For Cannes Film Festival". Retrieved 1 May 2019.
- "Pawel Pawlikowski: 'I was a lost guy in a weird city'". The Guardian. 18 September 2014. Retrieved 20 November 2020.
- Robey, Tim (23 February 2015). "Pawel Pawlikowski on Oscar winner Ida". The Telegraph. Retrieved 20 November 2020.
- Ellison, Jo (15 February 2020). "Malgosia Bela in London – and in Love". Financial Times. Retrieved 20 November 2020.
- "Sanitariuszka, powstaniec, reżyser. Nowi honorowi obywatele Warszawy". Retrieved 15 July 2020.
- Paweł Pawlikowski at IMDb
- BBC Interview 2004
- Pawel Pawlikowski's website
- Paweł Pawlikowski at Culture.pl
- Interview with Terry Gross on NPR's Fresh Air, 12 February 2015
- Paweł Pawlikowski and his TV movie documentaries From Moscow to Pietushki, Dostoevsky’s Travels, Serbian Epics and Tripping with Zhirinovski on vimeo