Robert Więckiewicz as Lech Wałęsa
|Directed by||Andrzej Wajda |
|Produced by||Michal Kwiecinski|
|Screenplay by||Janusz Glowacki|
|Story by||Janusz Glowacki |
|Editing by||Milenia Fiedler|
|Studio||Akson Studio 
|Budget||3.5 million € |
Wałęsa (Polish pronunciation: [vaˈwɛ̃sa]) is a 2012 biopic directed by Andrzej Wajda, starring Robert Więckiewicz as Lech Wałęsa. As Andrzej Wajda conceded at Krakow's Off Plus Camera Film Festival in April 2012, he foresees trouble coming his way once the film is released.
Lech Wałęsa, an electrician at the Gdańsk shipyards, participated in 1970's local demonstrations.  While he keeps the bloody aftermath in mind he concentrates on day-to-day duties. Yet ten years later a new uprising takes place and he happens to become an unexpected and charismatic leader of Polish dockworkers.  This is the beginning of a new movement that successfully stands up to the communistic regime. Wałęsa is pushed into representing the working population of Poland. The Soviet Union, hitherto regarded as too fearsome to mess with, has to cut them slack. The Polish example of solidarity triggers hope all over Eastern Europe and causes a domino effect. People in Eastern Germany follow the Polish example, eventually start demonstrating for freedom and then achieve the German reunification by a peaceful revolution. The Soviet Union dissolves and so does its former satellite state Yugoslavia. While Europe is reshaped Poland remains stable and peaceful. Yet a huge variety of political parties unfolds and Poland is at the brink of becoming as ungovernable as the late Weimar Republic. Lech Wałęsa answers the calling and is elected the first president of the new Polish democracy. But now people start to think that Wałęsa has it to good.  Suchlike propelled they start to seek for ways to diminish him until they finally accomplish to dig deep enough to disclose equivocal decisions he made when he still was an electrician who temporarily felt overstrained while carrying all the hopes and expectations his country had heaped on him.
Already in April 2011 Andrzej Wajda had told The Guardian he intended to make a film just in order to "shine new light on Lech Wałęsa".  Author Janusz Głowacki was quoted having said the film, "is not just going to be romanticism. There will be irony, too. Don't worry."
Director Andrzej Wajda declared in a press conference the Nobel laureate and former president of Poland had condoned the project.  He also stated he considered the making of this film his so far hardest professional challenge. Still he couldn't help but realise the categorical imperative and consequently he quoted the famous slogan of his friend Lech Wałęsa: "Nie chcem, ale muszem." (I don't want but I must.) 
Monica Bellucci was at a time supposed to play Oriana Fallaci but finally Maria Rosaria Omaggio got the role.  Andrzej Wajda was reported having said his tight budget had influenced his choice.
Andrzej Wajda announced he is going to blend in real contemporary news material. That is because the film strives to "give testimony to the truth". The contemporary footage will be adapted by superimposing the face of Robert Więckiewicz on Wałęsa's real face. 
Janusz Głowacki assured journalists his script was not meant to be an apotheosis but showed Lech Wałęsa, "as a man of flesh and blood, a leader of great strength but also someone who has his weaknesses". When he knew Andrzej Wajda pursued the same approach it made all the difference to him: "So I thought it would be an interesting project".
- "Director Andrzej Wajda begins shooting Lech Walesa film". Retrieved 2012-01-10.
- "The 85-year-old director, who has made more than 50 features, has just begun shooting "Walesa," adapting material from a book by Janusz Glowacki". Retrieved 2012-01-11.
- "Robert Wieckiewicz to Play Lech Walesa in Andrzej Wajda-Directed Biopic". Retrieved 2012-01-10.
- "Polish actor Robert Wieckiewicz plays Solidarity leader, electrician Lech Walesa in a movie about this hero of Poland's road to democracy". Retrieved 2011-01-17.
- "Polish actor Robert Wieckiewicz, who will play Walesa in the film, says he faces a tough task in bringing the charismatic leader to life onscreen, adding: "He's one of the best-known Poles. I think there are dozens of Walesa experts in Poland and each of them will have their own opinion."". Retrieved 2012-01-10.
- "Wałęsa is produced by Akson Studio in co-production with Canal +". Retrieved 2012-01-11.
- "The two-hour movie is due for release in the fall of 2012, probably on Wałęsa’s birthday, Sept. 29.". Retrieved 2012-01-10.
- "Its €3.5m budget includes co-production support from Canal+ and €1.3m in backing from the Polish Film Institute.". Retrieved 2012-01-10.
- "However, the director acknowledged that he is bracing himself for criticism. “I'm not going to have an easy life after the film is finished,” he said.". Retrieved 2012-04-20.
- "Walesa, who is being played by acclaimed actor Robert Wieckiewicz, took part in the 1970 demonstrations, which occurred ten years before the founding of the Solidarity trade union.". Retrieved 2011-01-17.
- "Wajda, intruding into a private, even intimate sphere of the trade union’s leader, attempts to capture the phenomenon of this incredible metamorphosis: from a simple worker, focused on his day-to-day duties, into a charismatic leader". Retrieved 2011-01-17.
- "The moment he became president, people came out and said, 'Why is he the one to be president? Maybe I should be president. I am maybe better educated.'?". Retrieved 2011-01-17.
- "Andrzej Wajda film will shine new light on Lech Walesa". Retrieved 2012-01-11.
- "He said Walesa, 68, who launched the Solidarity union that helped topple communism in Eastern Europe, had given his blessing to the film.". Retrieved 2012-01-10.
- ""This film is going to be the hardest of my career," Wajda, 85, told reporters". Retrieved 2012-01-11.
- ""I don’t want to, but I have to," he said, quoting a line Walesa coined and often used while president in the early 1990s.". Retrieved 2012-01-11.
- "Monica Bellucci, who was set (said?) to play Oriana Fallaci, withdrew from the project at the last minute.". Retrieved 2012-01-11.
- ""For financial reasons, we had to drop the idea of casting Monica Belluci as the journalist Oriana Fallaci," said Wadja, referring to the famed Italian reporter journalist who interviewed Walesa in the 1980s.". Retrieved 2012-01-11.
- "The director said documentary footage from the Walesa-led strike in the Gdansk shipyard and the ensuing successful talks with communist authorities will be woven into the movie that is to debut in Poland in the fall of 2012". Retrieved 2012-01-11.
- "Some scenes are combined with period footage. "The latter makes up around 10 percent of the film," said producer Michal Kwiecinski, noting that Wieckiewcz's face will be superimposed on Walesa's in the archive material.". Retrieved 2011-01-31.
- "My aim is to show Polish people the truth," says Wajda. "If it's accepted in the Western world, that's a bonus. But my aim is primarily here."". Retrieved 2012-01-11.
- "Civic Platform politician asked Amber Gold for money". Retrieved 2012-08-16.
- "Walesa biopic will not have Amber Gold as investor". Retrieved 2012-08-17.
|Wikimedia Commons has media related to: Wałęsa|
- Wałęsa at the Internet Movie Database
- Official Photo Gallery on Wałęsa
- Maja Czarnecka: Poland's anti-communist icon Walesa, at last the movie