Saturday, September 16, 2006

Kieslowski and smoking

In Memoriam - Krzysztof Kieslowski: To Smoke and Drink in L.A. (Harvey Weinstein)

He drank too much and smoked too much, he was proud, arrogant, entertainingly cynical - in other words, my kind of guy.

At every film festival and award ceremony, ..., Krzysztof was always there with his Polish vodka and his cigarettes, even when the event was in that smoker's hell known as L.A. I always had to assign one person on my staff to figure out where he could smoke, and, after three vodkas, my normal competitive nature was so dull that I didn't care if
we won or lost.

Krzysztof came to the Oscars last year even though they were in L.A. We found the smoking area in the Shrine for him, but had a much tougher time with the Governors Ball. He smuggled in the Polish vodka and I joined happily in his conspiracy.

An interview with Kieslowski in the 21-27 March 2004 issue

"I have no interest at all in working in the U.S. ... And besides, if I come over to work in America I will feel that with my cigarette smoking I will be disturbing everyone."

Krzysztof Kieslowski - Blue-White-Red & Green (Alex Waterhouse-Hayward)

I photographed him for the Globe & Mail on October 7, 1994. ... Kieslowski did not look well and he was chain smoking. I go this impression that he was not going to be around for long. A year later he had a heart attack and barely recovered. ... As he looked straight into my camera I saw a man who was preparing to die.

(Click the above text block to view the "preparing to die" photo of Kieslowski, with cigarette in his hand)

Mr Kieslowski, how are you? (Streaming Thoughts, Flowing Visions)




Kieslowski's Decalogue, I and II (finfelt)

This is way OT, but my favorite story about Kieslowski is that before his death he was so horrified at the militant non-smoking regulations in L.A. that he wanted to do a two-parter about heaven and hell, with hell represented by...L.A..

Three Colors: Red (1993) (American Cinematographer)

After confirming at a press conference that Red will be his directorial swan song (and it was), he states plaintively that, "My real dream is to be in the countryside, sitting on a chair, smoking."

Kieslowski's many colours (Patrick Abrahamson)

And now, at what appears to be the height of his creative talent, he has confounded viewers and critics alike by deciding to retire from directing to his country home, as he puts it, to: "smoke, read, and mow my lawn."

Retirement has, however, not been the "sitting at home and smoking cigarettes" that he had originally envisioned. "It's not that simple to sever contacts with everything that you've done for the past years. ..."

Krzysztof Kieslowski the pocket essential guide (Monika Maurer)

In 1994, at the height of his creative powers, Kieslowski stunned lovers of European cinema by announcing his retirement. He had made enough money to keep himself in cigarettes, he said. Two years later he was dead.

The panel "Colour me Kieslowski" (Oleksiy Radynski)

When Agnieszka Holland came to Poland in the beginning of the 1970’s and was introduced to a young Polish documentarist, who was admired only by a couple of colleagues but already had a habit of permanent smoking, it was impossible for her to guess that, 35 years later, she’d be discussing his art in this company.

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