Ida wins the Oscar

Pawel Pawlikowski with Oscar

“We made a film in black and white about the need for silence and withdrawal from the world and contemplation, and here we are at this epicentre of noise and world attention – fantastic! Life is full of surprises!” exclaimed Pawel Pawlikowski as he picked up the Oscar statuette for Best Foreign-language Film for LUX Prize 2014 winner Ida.


Attendees at Los Angeles’ Dolby Theatre celebrated the Academy’s decision with a standing ovation as Pawlikowski went on stage to receive the award. Up there on his own – he had been accompanied by lead actresses Agata Kulesza and Agata Trzebuchowska on the red carpet – he thanked his crew, his family and everybody who supported his film.


Ida has managed to achieve an impressive feat – it is the first LUX Prize winner ever to win an Oscar. This recognition proves the outstanding quality of Pawlikowski’s film, and its ability to astonish all types of audiences, critics and academies, in Europe and beyond.


"Cinema represents the common heritage that Europe wants to preserve and make accessible to all," said vice-president of the European Parliament in charge of LUX Prize Antonio Tajani. "This is one of the main objectives of the LUX Prize, established in 2007 as part of the celebrations for the 50th anniversary of the signing of treaties of Rome," said Tajani. "With Ida, Europe leads overseas the immense wealth and capacity of its film industry, helping to convey the values and the common European identity."


Chair of the EU Culture Committee Silvia Costa added, “The Oscar for Ida is the ultimate proof of the extraordinary capacity of our cinema to speak a universal language, telling stories that can be loved by audiences around the whole world. This award confirms the intuition of the LUX Prize of the European Parliament, the only one in the world to give out a film prize.”


A front-runner since the beginning of the awards season, Ida had already won myriad other prizes, including five European Film Awards (including the one for Best Film), a BAFTA for Best Foreign-language Film, a Goya for Best European Film, the ASC Spotlight Award, a FIPRESCI Prize at the Toronto Film Festival, as well as other distinctions at London, Wiesbaden, Gijón, Minsk and so on.


Ida also represents the first time that the Oscar for Best Foreign-language Film prize has ever been won by a Polish feature. Polish cinema had had nine unsuccessful attempts in the category so far; the latest one of these was Agnieszka Holland’s In Darkness, in 2011.


Congratulations, Ida!