Wojtek Wawszcyzk was on fine form on LIAF day 4, providing A’s to the Q’s in our post ‘George the Hedgehog’ Q&A.
Wotjek revealed that an impressive 90 prints of the film were released in Poland alone and went on to say how genuinely surprised he was that the distributors were prepared to take such a risk on the film… mainstream it is not! Nag (LIAF Director) asked about the funding for the film, which mostly came from the Polish Cultural Institute plus from the occasional bit of product placement within the film for an added financial boost.
Asked if there were any plans for a sequel, he replied they’ll be skipping the sequel (sequels are notoriously bad he joked) and going straight to the Third installment. Wojtek and the team from ‘George the Hedgehog’ are hoping to make a feature for children next, based once again on a comic book that was big in the 80s.
A brief lesson in Poland’s recent history explained the political and cultural context to ‘George the Hedgehog’ – according to Wojtek, since Poland gained freedom some 20 years ago, there has been confusion – people struggle to distinguish art from x-factor…the taste spectrum it seems, has gone a tad wonky. ‘George the Hedgehog’ pokes fun at this and people who have been offended by the film Wojtek observed, tend to have taken it too literally.
Clearly a lot of fun was had during the production – there was some level of de-sensitisation to the more risque subject matter for sure, and the humour rubbed off to some extent – one birthday present during the production consisted of a rubber sheep from a sex shop. On a much more wholesome note, Wojtek and his now wife Anna Blassczyzk (another animator from the film and also a guest at this years LIAF) got married during production.
Cult movies Wojtek joked, often only get truly apprectiated after their Director dies… we have a feeling here at LIAF, that thankfully that won’t be the case with ‘George the Hedgehog’