He was born on 23rd March 1943, in Bydgoszcz. He was a film director, screenwriter, teacher, and commentator. He graduated from the Film and TV Direction Department of the Lodz Film School. At the end of the 1960s and the beginning of 1970s, Jerzy Ridan produced films as part of the “Nowa Huta” Amateur Film Club in Krakow.
Jerzy Ridan was an author of over 60 documentary films, which won numerous awards at various film festivals, for example in Milan, Glasgow, Ostend, Velden, Cologne, Leipzig, Trenčianske Teplice, Łódź, or Krakow. His film ,,Zielone słońce” won the UNICA Silver Medal at the festival in Ostend (1973) and the Olivier Bell Award in Glasgow (1973), while his ,,Aby być “won the UNICA Gold Medal in Cologne (1974) and a Brown Medal at the festival in Velden (1975), to name a few.
Back in the 1980s, Jerzy Ridan worked as an assistant director for various full-length films. In 1987, he directed the film ,,Sonata Marymoncka” / “Marymont Rhapsody”, the only full-length feature film in his career, based on the prose by Marek Hłasko, starring Olaf Lubaszenko and Henryk Bista in the leading roles.
In 2009, he was the director of Nowohuckie Maratony Filmowe (Nowa Huta Film Marathons) and Nowa Huta Film Festival, as well as the originator of Nowa Huta Newsreel.
Jerzy Ridan was also a teacher involved in giving theatre and film lessons at the C.K. Norwid Culture Centre in Nowa Huta and the Bursa Youth Centre of Culture in Krakow-Mistrzejowice, and conducted screenwriting workshops, as part of Studia Literacko-Artystyczne (SLA / postgraduate studies in literature and creative writing) at the Jagiellonian University and the AMA Film Academy in Kraków. He was a television correspondent in Toronto and the owner of the ER Film Studio production company.
Jerzy Ridan lived in Kraków, where he died on 2nd October 2016.
Trento Film Festival Mountains and Cultures – The Golden Gentian for the best speleological film ,,Pod światem”; Trenčianske Teplice – the second edition of the Art Film IFF, an award given by the staroste of the city of Trenčín for the film ,,Józef Rychlik”; Kraków – The 30th edition of the OFF Short Film Festival – a honorary diploma and the Canal+ Award for the film ,,Lenin z Krakowa”; Niepokalanów – The 12th edition of Catholic Short Film Festival – first prize in the documentary film category for the film ,,Róg Marksa” i ,,Obrońców Krzyża”; Kraków – Nowa Huta Film Festival, Special Laurels for lifetime achievement; The Man in Danger Media Festival – The Kazimierz Karabasz “Patient Eye” Award for the film ,,Orkiestra dęta”.