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Agnieszka Holland sets sights on WW II hero Jan Karski

PR dla Zagranicy
Nick Hodge 05.06.2012 12:31
Film director Agnieszka Holland received the 2012 Jan Karski Freedom Award from the American ambassador on Tuesday and declared that she hopes to make a film about the wartime hero.

Agnieszka Holland at Polish Radio

“For years I've been trying to make a film about Jan Karski,” she revealed.

“We are currently looking for a producer for this film,” she added.

Jan Karski was a courier for the official Polish underground army (AK) during the war, bringing news to the West about the extent of the Holocaust.

After the war, he settled in the United States, and the Jan Karski Freedom Award has been bestowed by the American Embassy in Warsaw since 2008 to Poles who have “worked for the promotion of democracy and human rights.”

Previous recipients have included former president Lech Walesa.

Holland was announced as this year's winner on 23 February, in the wake of her Oscar nomination for her most recent film, the Holocaust drama In Darkness.

“In bringing this true story to millions, Agnieszka Holland carries on the work of Jan Karski, who spoke truth to power at a time when too few were willing to listen,” ambassador Lee A. Feinstein stated.

Jan Karski's legacy became embroiled in a diplomatic storm last week, when President Barack Obama mistakenly referred to “a Polish death camp,” while awarding the late WW II hero the Presidential Medal of Freedom – America's highest civilian honour.

Meanwhile, Agnieszka Holland has said that it is too early to say when she could begin filming the Karski biopic. She has also shown an interest in making a film about WWII spy Krystyna Skarbek – the subject of a new biography by UK writer Clare Mulley - but it is unclear whether the project will go ahead.

Holland's latest project is mini-series for HBO about Jan Palach, a Czech student who set himself on fire following the Soviet invasion of Czechoslovakia in 1968 (nh).

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