It's Time to Die: A performance by Danuta Zavlarska

Exactly 15 years ago (October 19, 2007) the movie premiered “It’s time to death” Directed by Dorota Kordzawska. for the main role actress, 91 years old at that time Danuta ZavlarskaPerformance in this production turns out to be the role of life. The actress was awarded the Golden Lions at the Polish Film Festival in Gdynia, and was also honored with the Eagle – Polish Film Award.

“When we were making this movie, Danuta was 91 years old. We were a little worried about what she looked like. At the same time, she surprised us a lot,” recalls director Dorota Kudzerzawska.

“I remember when we were filming a scene where Mrs. Danuta, holding a cup of hot tea, was going up steep stairs. The actress was accompanied by a dog, a female Velma. Mrs. Danuta at first. So — the dog was rushing and Mrs. Danuta was running. On the sixth try, I asked the actress to go slower. Finally, she called: “Danutka, please, go slower, remember that you played an old woman, says the director.

In the book Danuta Szaflarska “play to live”authored by Katarzyna Kobiesowska, is a funny story related to the making of the film. “It’s time to death”. It was about… a swing. In the script, Kędzierzawska writes that Aniela swings standing, but the swing is suspended on … seven-meter ropes.

“Because a boy playing Dostoevsky fell from a swing, we fenced it with ropes so the kids wouldn’t climb in there. At some point, we shoot a completely different shot with Dostoevsky and you hear Arthur. [Reinharta – operatora, red.]: “Stop, look!” I turn my head and see 91-year-old Danotka rocking. froze. (…]We ran straight away… but Danutka doesn’t want to get off. Please, I’m begging… She replied: ‘It’s written in the script that Angela is swinging standing, I have to train. Look, Dorothy, I purposely wore flat shoes.'” In the end, Arthur had to ask the players from the team to take Danutka from the swing ”- says Kędzierzawska in the book.

In one of the interviews, Szaflarska commented on this situation: “On the set, they watched me terribly so as not to get too close to the swing.”

“Danusya told me that she very much enjoyed the spectacle of dying, when she had to lie on the sofa with a rosary in her hand. Then she thought that it was not the time to die and got out of bed and this scene was shot several times, because she could not feel it ”- said the actress’s friend Barbara Balochoa in Tygodnik TVP.

“It’s time to death” It is the story of an old lady full of life and sense of humor. At the end of her life, a woman has to face not only the present, but the past as well. Win or lose life? Even if he asked himself this question, he would never answer it. Angela looks at reality with a sarcastic smile and with that smile deals with her loneliness.

Dorota Kędzierzawska admitted that there will be no film “It’s time to death”If not for the person Danuta Zavlarska.

“This is actually a monodrama inspired by the unusual character of Danuta Zavlarska, written especially for her. Danuta Zavlarska is not only an outstanding actress, but also a wonderful character” – said the director. “People of this class, such as a sense of humor and serenity of soul are rare. It seemed to me that it was worth showing the existence of such people” – added Kędzierzawska.

The film, however, is inspired by real events.

“I heard from someone the story of a lady who owned an old, beautiful ‘widermajer’ log house. The tenants destroyed it for many years, and the lady tried to get it back. Finally, after many years of trying, I became an independent owner of this house. Unfortunately, she died shortly thereafter.” – said Kędzierzawska.

Where does the title of the movie come from? “He appeared immediately, when everything was still there unwritten. However, let us not be deceived, because this is clearly a film about life – struggling with it, but also about the passion and joy of life, which is at hand each of us, But only some people know it, ”- explained Kędzierzawska.

“Incredible serenity, great curiosity about the world, courage and humility” – this is how actress Dorota Kudzyrzawska described in one of the interviews, who made the documentary “Another World” about her in 2012.

With 97 minutes of iconic film, a direct reference to the age of the actress, Danuta Zawlarska was 97 years old at the time the film was made – viewers have the opportunity to see the world through the eyes of this unique character of Polish culture.

Danuta Szavlarska passed away in February 2017 at the age of 102.

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