A special event of the Krakow Film Festival is the ceremony of the Dragon of Dragons, awarded for a special contribution to the development of world cinematography. This time, the Program Council of the Krakow Film Foundation decided to honor the forerunner of new animation techniques – Caroline Leaf, who came to Krakow to receive her prize personally.
– There is now a natural tendency to give all titles, mentions and honors to women, and finally to induce them to take over and restore order – prof. Tadeusz Lubelski, film critic and theoretician, Chairman of the Program Council said starting the ceremony.
– Caroline Leaf is the author of few films, but here a small amount translates into outstanding quality. The Dragon Dragons Award was given to her for three reasons: her ability to tell stories, inventiveness and innovation in the field of materials and techniques for creating animations, and finally her openness to different cultures – Tadeusz Lubelski emphasized.
The official ceremony of the Dragon of Dragon awards was held on May 27, 2019 at the Academy of Theater Arts at the 59th Krakow Film Festival. In addition to the Dragon of Dragon statuette, Caroline Leaf received flowers from the hands of three Cracovia girls in traditional costumes who participated in the festival from an early age.
– I am very grateful to the Program Council of the Krakow Film Foundation for awarding me a prize for lifetime achievement. The world is changing very fast today and I was afraid that now that I’ve stopped making animated films, my work will be forgotten. The Dragon of Dragons Award, received at one of the most important and oldest film festivals in the world, ensures that my works will be remembered and shown to future generations – said the winner Caroline Leaf while receiving the prize.
The ceremony ended with the screening of four films personally announced by the laureate: “Street”, “Two Sisters”, “Owl, Who Married A Goose ” and “Metamorphosis of Mr. Samsa”. Caroline Leaf is an American animator who has been creating animated films since the ’70s of the last century. She is a forerunner of new animation techniques – sand animation and animation painted on the glass under the camera. Her innovative approach to animation techniques, individual style, as well as the lightness of transmitting complex emotions have been repeatedly appreciated, including nominations for an Oscar or BAFTA and awards at festivals in Annecy, Ottawa and Montreal. In 2017, she received the Annie Award for lifetime achievement in Hollywood. Currently, Leaf lives in London, creating oil and watercolor paintings.
At the Krakow Film Festival, Caroline Leaf won the highest award twice. In 1977 she received the Silver Dragon for “Street.” A year later, the Golden Dragon award for the film “Metamorphosis of Mr. Samsa”. The film was also among 20 titles in the prestigious list of the best films in the history of the Festival, prepared for its 50th jubilee. In 1979, Leaf was a member of the jury of an international competition in Krakow.
The Dragon of Dragons Award is handed for the 22nd time this year, is the highest distinction of the Program Council of the Krakow Film Foundation, the organizer of the Krakow Film Festival, as an expression of appreciation for the contribution to the development of world cinematography in the field of documentary and animated film. Among the previous winners there were many distinguished artists, including Werner Herzog, Kazimierz Karabasz, Bohdan Kosinski, Bogdan Dziworski, Allan King, Albert Maysles, Jonas Mekas, Helena Trestíková, Stephen and Timothy Quay, Raoul Servais, Jerzy Kucia, Paul Driessen. Last year the award went to Sergei Loznitsa.