Story

December, 1969.

A space capsule carrying two cosmonauts tumbles violently towards Earth.

On the ground, one of them comes to. Finding the other man unconscious, he attemps to signal for help on the radio. As he does this, the dirty face of a little girl appears momentarily in the capsule’s porthole window, peeking in curiously. Confused, the cosmonaut exits the capsule, finding himself in the middle of a snowstorm on a vast, snowy plain. He sets off in search of the little girl, hoping to find rescue. But this is a strange and ancient place he has landed in, and things are not all what they appear to be…

Statement

Against Night is the story of a cosmonaut who struggles to come to terms with the death of his beloved wife and daughter. When an accident leaves him on the verge of death himself, he discovers that his memories of them, memories he’s been trying to bury, may be his only salvation. The juxtaposition of the film’s core emotional theme with the conquest of space accentuates the idea that as man explores the limits of his understanding of the universe, he will always struggle with the unknowable depths of his own soul.

Filmmakers

Stefan Kubicki

Stefan Kubicki

Writer/Director

Stefan was born in New York State and raised on both sides of the Atlantic, eventually graduating from the University of Washington in Seattle with a degree in sociology. After a brief stint at a UN-based NGO in New York, he moved back to Poland to study cinematography at the storied Polish National Film School in Łódź. While in Poland he wrote and directed WSCHÓD (EAST, 2008), a short film shot partly in the Chernobyl Zone of Alienation, which premiered in competition at the Gdynia Film Festival. He spent the next few years working in London and Berlin, completing several screenplays, including the Polish Film Institute-awarded SZEREGOWY WOJTEK (PRIVATE WOJTEK). He is currently a Directing Fellow at the American Film Institute Conservatory in Los Angeles, where he is a recipient of a Kosciuszko Foundation scholarship. Website

Saba Zerehi

Saba Zerehi

Producer

Saba graduated from UCLA with a BA in Psychology and a minor in cognitive science. After finishing school, she worked on her first short film as a PA, where she realized that she wanted to be a producer. Over the last two years, she has been gaining more and more experience in the film industry. For the last year, she has been working at Funny or Die, starting as an intern and slowly moving her way up to becoming an accountant and a producer. The bulk of her experience there is on Web content; however, she has occasionally worked on television shows and commercials.

Nico Navia

Nico Navia

Cinematographer

Nico was born in Bogota, Colombia, where he spent the first 10 years of his life before moving to Miami and making that his permanent home. He graduated in 2011 from NYU’s Tisch School of the Arts with a BFA in Film and Television Production. During his time in New York he discovered his sensibilities and passion for composition, movement, and light among other photographic elements and quickly shifted his aspirations of becoming a director into dedicating his life’s work to the art and craft of cinematography. Since then he has had the privilege of working on countless projects ranging from narrative to documentary and commercial work. In 2010, he was chosen to study for a semester at one of Europe’s oldest and most prestigious film schools, FAMU in Prague, Czech Republic, where he was exposed to experiences that have deeply impacted his work as an artist and storyteller. He was recently awarded the Bronze Award in the Kodak Student Scholarship Program for his work on THE SUPERMAN, a production exercise at the AFI Conservatory. Website

Aleksandra Zgorska

Aleksandra Zgorska

Production Designer

Aleksandra, originally from London, grew up with a strong love of the arts. She got her BA in Classical Studies from Royal Holloway University of London, after which she moved out to Los Angeles to study film. Since then she has interned at a production company, worked as a casting assistant for an award-winning independent feature, studied acting, and crewed on a number of short productions as script supervisor, grip, art department and production designer. After graduating from the Los Angeles Film School with a scholarship and a passion for design, Aleksandra came to AFI to enhance and focus her skills as a production designer, further nourishing her love of creating a beautiful frame.

Shayar Bhansali

Shayar Bhansali

Editor

After graduating with a degree in Psychology, Shayar spent a few years navigating the indie circuit in India. He worked primarily with production company Oijo! to produce content for The Big Indian Picture and Balcony TV Delhi before working as an assistant editor on a feature and TV series for Yash Raj Films, Mumbai. He is currently a second year fellow at AFI, where he is the recipient of a Tom Yoda and Auerbach-Stuart Scholarship for 2013-14. A dreamer and foodie, he is serious about powerful story telling but really spends most of his time looking for perfectly baked butter croissants.

Trailer

Atmosphere

Some of our visual references for the film.

The AFI Conservatory

At the world-renowned AFI Conservatory, a dedicated group of working professionals from the film and television communities serve as mentors in a hands-on, production-based environment nurturing the talents of tomorrow’s storytellers. The Conservatory is consistently recognized as one of the world’s top film schools.

More information is available at the AFI Conservatory website.

Notable Alumni