Saga of the Ancient Forest. A Film Tale (in Polish)

Authors: Bożena and Jan Walencik

Conception, editorial and text: Bożena and Jan Walencik
Photographs: Jan Walencik
Photographic collaboration: Bożena Walencik, Krzysztof Komar, Andrzej Muśko
Illustrations: Jan Walencik
Editing of photographs: Jan Walencik
Proofreading: Marta Kołodziej-Sobocińska, Wojciech Sobociński, Krzysztof Komar

Volume: 664 pages (including 12 carton, inter-title spreads, of which 11 with a single, left fold-out wing)
Format: 29 x 32 cm, thickness of album: 5,5 cm
Album weight: approx. 6 kg
Photographs: 1942
Additional illustrations: 11 sketches
Binding: full-paper hardback, embossed, part of the edition in cardboard, full-paper printed case, part with printed wrapper

Graphic design, typesetting and page layout: Jan Walencik
Technological coordination: Marcin Samojłowicz
Production coordination: Krzysztof Komar
Printing and binding: Białostockie Zakłady Graficzne S.A.

Publisher ŻUBROWA 10 JAN WALENCIK
Co-publisher: MARSHAL OFFICE OF PODLASKIE VOIVODSHIP

Patronage: Polish Film Institute, Polish Filmmakers Association
Media patronage: Polish Television, National Geographic Poland
Collaboration: Białowieża National Park, Hajnówka District Council
Scientific collaboration: Institute of Mammal Biology of the Polish Academy of Sciences in Białowieża
Release support: Pronar Sp. z o.o., Plum Sp. z o.o., EC Test Systems Sp. z o.o.

Year of release: 2016
ISBN: 978-83-930136-2-3

Front cover of Bożena and Jan Walencik’s album Saga of the Ancient Forest. A Film Tale. ŻUBROWA 10 JAN WALENCIK, 2016.

The Saga of the Ancient Forest. A Film Tale is a book like no other before: A FEATURE FILM ALBUM. It was created on the basis of the 10-part natural history nature-feature series Saga of the Ancient Forest, created by Bożena and Jan Walencik for TVP, in the years 2000-2009, and revitalised for HD in 2015 and 2016. The screenplays and 1942 photographs included are the result of almost 10 years of simultaneous photographing and filming.

The 664-page album Saga of the Ancient Forest. A Film Tale consists of: a film prologue, 10 parts – feature stories about 10 animal characters from the Białowieża Forest, and a photographic essay about behind the scenes of the shooting.

The contents of the album are plot stories about individual animal characters representing the fauna of north-eastern Poland, especially the Podlasie region. These are stories about a wolf, an ant, a raven, a bison, a wood beetle, a wild boar, a vole, a beaver, a pygmy owl and a lynx. What sets it apart from other nature album items is the original, invented by the authors and especially elaborated form of communication, used for the first time. Because the guide leading through each story is a composed author’s film screenplay, while the uniquely beautiful photographs are arranged in the likeness of film frames. In this way, the authors offer the Reader a peculiar cinematic journey; they want the Reader to feel like the producer of the series, like its screenwriter who, step by step, absorbs each character’s story as he interacts with the photographed film frames and the screenplay. Of course, they have a profound educational purpose in doing so: they want the young, older and fully grown-up Reader to take a wise delight in the special heritage that this corner of Europe is still blessed with, through aesthetic emotion and knowledge (photographs and texts), and consequently to join the great company of wise friends of Nature. On top of this, the authors offer the reader a completely different experience: they reveal the behind the scenes of the making of the TV series, and therefore the backstage production of the photographs and texts for this album. These are engaging tales of nature filmmaking – first-hand, from a pair of authors, with the emotions that accompanied the production.

The book’s large format and thickness (5.5 cm), enormous volume (664 pages), hardback case/cover and its weight (almost 6 kg) alone make it a promise of an attractive adventure. Through its original graphic form and its extensive but neat editorial form, through its screenplay and photographic content, it is a unique position promoting Polish film art and Nature at the same time, unprecedented on the publishing market.

The trailer for the album Saga of the Ancient Forest. A Film Tale. Created by Jan Walencik. © ŻUBROWA 10 2017
NOTE: circulation and sales information – out of date.
NOTE: turn on the English subtitles at YouTube!

E054444. The authors, Bożena and Jan Walencik with one of the first, December copy of the album Saga of the Ancient Forest. A Film Tale and with the BD disc release of Telewizja Polska S.A. with the series Saga of the Ancient Forest. 20.12.2016. © Krzysztof Komar 2017.

We present twenty original pages from the album Saga of the Ancient Forest. A Film Tale – an excerpt from Part I. The Tale of a Wolf. Nothing Beats a Pack and an excerpt from the supplement How the Saga Was Created. Our Plot. If you are viewing these on a screen of, say, 21 inches, they are obviously larger in the original (each page is 29 x 32 cm). NOTE: the two wider pages are shown at the beginning – at a different scale to the others, because each of the two is widened by a fold-out wing that is folded inwards when folded.

Excerpt from the album by Bożena and Jan Walencik Saga of the Ancient Forest. A Film Tale, Part I. The Tale of a Wolf. Nothing Beats a Pack. Page 21 (recto) with wing – title sketch. © ŻUBROWA 10 2017.

Excerpt from the album by Bożena and Jan Walencik Saga of the Ancient Forest. A Film Tale, Part I. The Tale of a Wolf. Nothing Beats a Pack. Page 22 (verso) with wing – title spread. © ŻUBROWA 10 2017. 

Excerpt from the album by Bożena and Jan Walencik Saga of the Ancient Forest. A Film Tale, Part I. The Tale of a Wolf. Nothing Beats a Pack. Page 23 (recto) with wing – title spread. © ŻUBROWA 10 2017. 

Excerpt from the album by Bożena and Jan Walencik Saga of the Ancient Forest. A Film Tale, Part I. The Tale of a Wolf. Nothing Beats a Pack. Page 25 (recto). © ŻUBROWA 10 2017. 

Excerpt from the album by Bożena and Jan Walencik Saga of the Ancient Forest. A Film Tale, Part I. The Tale of a Wolf. Nothing Beats a Pack. Page 26 (verso). © ŻUBROWA 10 2017. 

Excerpt from the album by Bożena and Jan Walencik Saga of the Ancient Forest. A Film Tale, Part I. The Tale of a Wolf. Nothing Beats a Pack. Page 27 (recto). © ŻUBROWA 10 2017. 

Excerpt from the album by Bożena and Jan Walencik Saga of the Ancient Forest. A Film Tale, Part I. The Tale of a Wolf. Nothing Beats a Pack. Page 28 (verso). © ŻUBROWA 10 2017. 

Excerpt from the album by Bożena and Jan Walencik Saga of the Ancient Forest. A Film Tale, Part I. The Tale of a Wolf. Nothing Beats a Pack. Page 29 (recto). © ŻUBROWA 10 2017. 

Excerpt from the album by Bożena and Jan Walencik Saga of the Ancient Forest. A Film Tale, Part I. The Tale of a Wolf. Nothing Beats a Pack. Page 30 (verso). © ŻUBROWA 10 2017.

Excerpt from the album by Bożena and Jan Walencik Saga of the Ancient Forest. A Film Tale, Part I. The Tale of a Wolf. Nothing Beats a Pack. Page 31 (recto). © ŻUBROWA 10 2017.

Excerpt from the album by Bożena and Jan Walencik Saga of the Ancient Forest. A Film Tale, Part I. The Tale of a Wolf. Nothing Beats a Pack. Page 32 (verso). © ŻUBROWA 10 2017. 

Excerpt from the album by Bożena and Jan Walencik Saga of the Ancient Forest. A Film Tale, Part I. The Tale of a Wolf. Nothing Beats a Pack. Page 33 (recto). © ŻUBROWA 10 2017. 

Excerpt from the album by Bożena and Jan Walencik Saga of the Ancient Forest. A Film Tale, Part I. The Tale of a Wolf. Nothing Beats a Pack. Page 34 (verso). © ŻUBROWA 10 2017. 

Excerpt from the album by Bożena and Jan Walencik Saga of the Ancient Forest. A Film Tale, Part I. The Tale of a Wolf. Nothing Beats a Pack. Page 35 (recto). © ŻUBROWA 10 2017. 

Excerpt from the album by Bożena and Jan Walencik Saga of the Ancient Forest. A Film Tale, Part I. The Tale of a Wolf. Nothing Beats a Pack. Page 36 (verso). © ŻUBROWA 10 2017. 

Excerpt from the album by Bożena and Jan Walencik Saga of the Ancient Forest. A Film Tale, Part I. The Tale of a Wolf. Nothing Beats a Pack. Page 37 (recto). © ŻUBROWA 10 2017. 

Excerpt from the album by Bożena and Jan Walencik Saga of the Ancient Forest. A Film Tale, How the Saga Was Created. Our Plot. Page 588 (verso). © ŻUBROWA 10 2017. 

Excerpt from the album by Bożena and Jan Walencik Saga of the Ancient Forest. A Film Tale, How the Saga Was Created. Our Plot. Page 589 (recto). © ŻUBROWA 10 2017.

Excerpt from the album by Bożena and Jan Walencik Saga of the Ancient Forest. A Film Tale, How the Saga Was Created. Our Plot. Page 630 (verso). © ŻUBROWA 10 2017.

Excerpt from the album by Bożena and Jan Walencik Saga of the Ancient Forest. A Film Tale, How the Saga Was Created. Our Plot. Page 631 (recto). © ŻUBROWA 10 2017.

The book Saga of the Ancient Forest. A Film Tale was published exclusively in Polish. Although its print run was exhausted very quickly, but it is sometimes possible to acquire it second hand. Such occasional copies still appear online: in bookshops, book auctions and other forums. This is probably the only way to get it if you would like to own this already rare book with Polish text and almost 2000 fascinating photographs. You can try to keep track of current listings by typing into your browser the phrase Saga prastarej puszczy. Opowieść filmowa album (in Polish).