Andrzej Wajda

from Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
Andrzej Wajda (2008)

Andrzej Witold Wajda ( listen ? / I ) (born March 6, 1926 in Suwałki ; † October 9, 2016 in Warsaw ) was a Polish film and theater director . Audio file / audio sample


Daniel Olbrychski (left) and Andrzej Wajda at the “Lubuskie Lato Filmowe” film festival in Łagów in the late 1960s

Andrzej Wajda was born the son of a teacher and the infantry officer Jakub Wajda. He spent his earliest childhood with a brother in his hometown. When his father was transferred to Radom , the family moved there too. Wajda's father was murdered in April 1940 with more than 3,000 other Polish prisoners of war from the Starobelsk NKVD camp in Kharkov . The mass execution took place at the same time as the Katyn massacre . Wajda himself was in the Polish Home Army in Radom during World War II and received drawing lessons underground. During the war he was active in some manual trades and also worked as an office worker for the railway . After the war, he studied painting at the Art Academy in Kraków from 1946 to 1950 and later went to the film school in Łódź . During his studies he became friends with Roman Polański, who was seven years his junior . In 1953 he played a small role in Wajda's exam film One Generation (Pokolenie) .

Wajda began his career as an assistant to the Polish director Aleksander Ford in his film The Five from Barska Street and made his first film in 1954 with A Generation , which is about the Polish resistance . His films The Canal and Ashes and Diamond are considered masterpieces of Polish cinema. The Canal is a powerful treatise on the Warsaw Uprising .

From 1959 Wajda was also a theater director, especially at Teatr Stary in Krakow , but also on international stages. For example, he staged Guilt and Atonement based on Fyodor Dostoyevsky at the Berlin Schaubühne in the 1980s . In 1987 he received the prestigious Kyoto Prize . In 1989 he was director of the Teatr Powszechny in Warsaw for a year .

In the 1980s Wajda went to France and made the film Danton there . His films have received awards at the most important international film festivals. In 2000 he received the Honorary Oscar and at the 2006 Berlinale the Honorary Golden Bear for his life's work.

In 1989, Wajda was elected to the Polish Senate as Solidarność's candidate and remained a senator until 1991.

In 1996 he staged the opening premiere of Teatr Polski , the Polish theater in Wroclaw, which burned down in January 1994. In November 2001, Wajda opened the Wajda 's name-bearing master school for film directing ( Polish : Mistrzowska Szkoła Reżyserii , the future film director, Andrzee ), together with his colleague Wojciech Marczewski , his long-time production manager Barbara Pec-Ślesicka and the Warsaw Documentary and Feature Film Studio (WFDiF) - or documentary film directors can learn their craft. In addition, the university is now as short and documentary film producer and including as host of the International Hartley-Merrill screenplay competition ( English Hartley-Merrill International Screenwriting Award ) operates.

In 1997, for the first time in almost half a century, he was able to win over Roman Polański to work in a Polish film as an actor. Polański took on a comic role in the film adaptation of the classic comedy Die Rache ( Zemsta in Polish ) by Aleksander Fredro . The film was released in 2002.

From October 2006 to January 2007 the shooting of Wajda's film about the Katyn massacre ran. Wajda himself: " I made the film Katyn because it is about my father's fate." The film was released in Polish cinemas on September 17, 2007 under the title Katyń ; In January 2008, Katyń's nomination for an Oscar for “Best Foreign Language Film” was announced. In 2009 Wajda took part in the 59th Berlinale with his new film Tatarak and announced at the press conference for the world premiere of the film in Berlin that his latest project would be a film about Lech Wałęsa .

Andrzej Wajda was married four times. His third marriage was with the actress Beata Tyszkiewicz . He had a daughter with her (* 1967). His surviving wife was the set designer and actress Krystyna Zachwatowicz .

Andrzej Wajda died in 2016 at the age of 90. He found his final resting place in the Salwator Cemetery (Cmentarz Salwatorski) in Krakow .


The Andrzej Wajda's Master School of Film Directing in Warsaw was named after him.


Important directorial work at the theater

  • 1960 - Hamlet by William Shakespeare at the coastal theater in Gdansk
  • 1963 - The wedding of Stanisław Wyspiański at the Old Theater in Krakow
  • 1970 - Play Strindberg by Friedrich Dürrenmatt at the Modern Theater in Warsaw
  • 1973 - The cheater by Friedrich Dürrenmatt at the Schauspielhaus in Zurich
  • 1974 - November night by Stanisław Wyspiański at the Old Theater in Krakow
  • 1976 - emigrants from Slawomir Mrozek at the Old Theater in Krakow
  • 1984 - Antigone by Sophocles at the Old Theater in Cracow
  • 1984 - Guilt and Atonement according to Dostoevsky at the Old Theater in Krakow
  • 1987 - Guilt and atonement according to Dostoevsky at the Schaubühne, West Berlin
  • 1988 - Miss Julie by August Strindberg at the Old Theater in Krakow
  • 1990 - Romeo and Juliet by William Shakespeare at Teatr Powszechny in Warsaw
  • 1994 - Mishima by Yukio Mishima at the Old Theater in Krakow
  • 2004 - Macbeth by William Shakespeare at the Old Theater in Krakow



  • Andrzej Wajda: My films. Experience from 30 years of filmmaking. Benziger, Zurich 1987 and others, ISBN 3-545-34072-4 .
  • Andrzej Wajda: Kino i reszta świata. Autobiography. Znak, Kraków 2000, ISBN 83-7006-987-8 .


  • LitDok East Central Europe Herder Institute (Marburg) .
  • Andrzej Wajda. Contributions by Klaus Eder, Klaus Kreimeier , Maria Ratschewa, Bettina Thienhaus. Film series, 23. Hanser, Munich a. a. 1980 ISBN 3-446-13136-1 . Filmography pp. 217-262
    • Andrzej Wajda . Cinéastes series . L'Atalante, Nantes 1982, ISBN 2-903699-01-1 (French version)
  • Randall D. Larson : " Danton - Sprawa Dantona " & " The Draftsman's Contract " 1982. In: Cinemascore. Vol. 5, No. 11/12, Fall / Winter 1983, ZDB -ID 979722-1 , p. 56 (English)
  • Film locations VSETH & VSU (eds.): Science Fiction - Andrzej Wajda. VSETH / VSUZH , Zurich 1990.
    • therein: Arabelle Frey: The wedding - Wesele. Pp. 37-40.
    • therein: Marek Kozlow: Andrzej Wajda. Bio and filmography. Pp. 15-25
  • Klaus Kreimeier: Allegories of Futility: Andrzej Wajda. In: Jörg-Dieter Kogel: European film art. Portraits of directors. Fischer Taschenbuch Verlag, Frankfurt am Main 1990, ISBN 3-596-24490-0 , pp. 180-196.
  • Jacek Fuksiewicz: 1955–1965: L'école polonaise. In: Guy Hennebelle, Alain Virmaux, Odette Virmaux (eds.): Les grandes “écoles” esthétiques (= CinémAction. No. 55). CinémAction u. a., Paris 1990, ISBN 2-85480-248-9 , pp. 58-63.
    • Jacek Fuksiewicz: Des Polonais a l'Quest. In: Guy Hennebelle, Roland Schneider (ed.): Cinémas métis. De Hollywood aux films beurs (= CinémAction. No. 56). CinémAction u. a., Paris 1990, ISBN 2-85480-259-4 , pp. 96-101.
  • Maria Janion : Egzystencja ludzi i duchów. Rodowód filmowej wyobraźni Andrzeja Wajdy. In: cinema. [Warsaw], Vol. 24, No. 4, April 1990, pp. 23-27 (Polish).
  • Janina Falkowska: “The political” in the films of Andrzej Wajda and Krzysztof Kieslowski . In Cinema Journal. Vol. 34, No. 2, Winter 1995 ISSN  0009-7101 pp. 37-50
    • dies., Andrzej Wajda: History, Politics and Nostalgia in Polish Cinema. Oxford and New York 2007
    • dies., The political films of Andrzej Wajda: Dialogism in "Man of Marble", "Man of Iron", and "Danton". Oxford and New York 1996
  • Lyudmila Djakova: Dvama ot golemite v Praga. In: cinema. No. 4, 1996, ISSN  0861-4393 , pp. 24-27 (In Bulgarian).
  • John Orr, Elzbieta Ostrowska (Ed.): The cinema of Andrzej Wajda. The art of irony and defiance. Wallflower, London et al. a. 2003, ISBN 1-903364-57-4 (English)
  • The silence after the massacre . In: Berliner Zeitung , February 9, 2008; Interview with Andrzej Wajda about his film The Katyn Massacre .
  • Maciej Karpiński: The Theater of Andrzej Wajda. Cambridge University Press 1989 ISBN 0-521-32246-4


Web links

Commons : Andrzej Wajda  - collection of images, videos and audio files

Individual evidence

  1. Interview with Andrzej Wajda about the war of aggression in Poland in 1939 and the Katyn massacre., August 31, 2009
  2. a b Forum [Warszawa], April 22, 2002, p. 4.
  3. ^ Website of the Andrzej Wajda Master School for Film Directing
  5. ^ Christian Neef, Jan Puhl: Victims played no role . In: Der Spiegel . No. 38 , 2009 ( online interview with Andrzej Wajda).
  6. The grave of Andrzej Wajda
  7. Mikołaj Gliński: Afterimage: Andrzej Wajda's Swan Song. (October 10, 2016) at, accessed on February 6, 2018.
  8. Awards of the Berlinale 2009 , accessed on April 29, 2017
  9. Andrzej Wajda odznaczony Orderem Orła Białego.  ( Page no longer available , search in web archivesInfo: The link was automatically marked as defective. Please check the link according to the instructions and then remove this notice., March 21, 2011@1@ 2Template: Toter Link /  
  10. The 2nd title is from Greenaway.
  11. Documentation with 2 focal points, 159 pp. From 2005: Association of Critical Politics.
  12. About Mère Jeanne des Anges - Matka Joanna od aniolow by Jerzy Kawalerowicz and Wajda's films. With filmography.
  13. About Roman Polański , Jerzy Skolimowski , Andrzej Żuławski , Krzysztof Zanussi & Wajda.
  14. ^ About ghosts in Wajda's films.
  15. A comparison of Wajda's Man of Iron - Czlowiek z welaza with Kieślowski's A Short Film about Killing - Krótki film o zabijaniu. (In English)
  16. On Wajda's and Peter Greenaway's film theory.