Pawel Pawlikowski's 'Ida' Wins Top Prize at Gdynia Film Festival

Roman Polanski was among those to present the Golden Lion to the director for his 1960s period piece about a young woman’s search for identity.

GDYNIA, POLAND – The 38th Gdynia Film Festival concluded Saturday, with the festival’s top prize, the Golden Lion, going to Ida, a monochrome 1960s period piece from Polish born, Paris-based director Pawel Pawlikowski.

The film centers on a young woman’s search for identity. Ida is the first Polish-language film for the Oxford-educated Pawlikowski, who cut his teeth on documentaries produced for British television and scored a major UK arthouse hit with 2004’s My Summer of Love.

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Pawlikowski, who was the festival’s jury president in 2011, received the prize for the film from current jury president Janusz Glowacki, Polish Minister of Culture Bogdan Zdrojewski and renegade director Roman Polanski. The film also picked up the festival's best supporting actress nod for Agata Kulesza's performance.

There were two Silver Lion winners – Malgorzata Szumowska’s gay-themed Berlinale entry In the Name of… and Kasia Roslaniec’s youth comedy Baby Blues. In the Name of… star Andrzej Chyra picked up a statuette for best actor and Baby Blues star Magdalena Berus won the professional acting debut prize.

Baby Blues also won a special jury prize, as did Slawomir Fabicki’s film Loving, which had previously been nominated for the Grand Prix at the 2012 Warsaw Film Festival and picked up the best film award at the Vilnius Film Festival.

Gdynia, which is devoted entirely to Polish film, held its closing ceremony at the Musical Theater at the Baltic seaside resort of Gdynia, one of the cities in the Tricity, an urban area consisting of three major Polish cities in Pomerania – Gdansk, Gdynia and Sopot.