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In July 2016 Yula’s two and a half-year-old daughter Eva was diagnosed with osteomyelitis, an extremely rare bone infection, which has required several surgeries and constant medical attention. She now awaits more surgery and a long recovery.
Yula and Eva need your support.

As Yula said recently: “I never imagined that life outside of the dump could be so difficult. It turns out that I am not as strong as I thought I was. When I was at the dump, I didn’t suffer as much as I suffer now as a result of Eva’s health problems. I am deeply appreciative to everyone who can help, for truly I don’t know what I would do otherwise. Thank you very much from the very bottom of my heart for your financial support of Eva in this time of her greatest need. I am still hoping that everything will turn out okay and with your kind help and support, that may still happen.”

To donate please go to the following link and specify that your donation is “For Yula”



Her name is Yula. She lives in Putin’s Russia. Her home is the largest garbage dump in Europe. This is the story of her life.

Ten-year-old Yula has but one dream – to lead a normal life. For 14 years, Oscar-nominated filmmaker Hanna Polak follows Yula as she grows up in the forbidden territory of Svalka, the garbage dump located 13 miles from the Kremlin in Putin’s Russia. SOMETHING BETTER TO COME is Yula’s story – a dramatic tale of coming of age and maturing to the point of taking destiny into one’s own hands. It is a story of hope, courage, and life, all shot in gripping vérité style that stuns with its directness and immediacy.

“A strikingly visceral and plaintively moving documentary that is arresting right from its first powerful moments.” – Mark Adams for Screen Daily

“This is a film that packs an emotional punch and is strikingly directed and shot by the talented Hanna Polak.” – Mark Adams for Screen Daily

“An eye-opening documentary” – Neil Young for The Hollywood Reporter

“An enriching experience and a remarkable project that aims and achieve to give voice to the voiceless, this film is at once strikingly real and impressively poetic due to its genuine portrayal of the situation of extreme poverty with an underlying sentiment of optimism.” – Matt Micucci for Cinecola

“Each edition of the IDFA you see a few pictures and faces you will not easily forget. The tears in the eyes of Yula, growing up between the garbage in Moscow, two weeks before the birth of her first child, is such a picture.” – Het Parool

“This film will make your jaw drop, thanks to Polak’s eye for optimism, humanity and birthday cake in a context of hopelessness that can hardly be believed.” – Volkskrant

“With this latest production from Polak, the sky is her limit.” – The Eagle Online

“Impressive.” – Marie Claire

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“Something Better to Come” has been nominated by the Producers Guild of America for the top documentary award!!!
Other PGA’s Feature Documentary Nominees are: “Amy,” “The Hunting Ground,” “The Look of Silence,” and “Meru”. The winner will be named on Jan. 23 at the PGA’s award ceremony at the Hyatt Regency Century Plaza in Los Angeles. In the previous years PGA’s winners have gone on to win the Oscars. Read more here: Variety, Deadline, The Wrap.

1. International Documentary Festival Amsterdam, (IDFA) 2014: Special Jury Award (Netherlands)
2. Trieste Film Festival: The Alpe Adria Cinema Award: Best Documentary (Italy)
3. FIFDH, Geneva: The Youth Jury Price, Creative Documentary (Switzerland)
4. Art DocFest Moscow: Grand Prix of ArtDoc (Russia)
5. ZagrebDox 2015: Special Mention (Croatia)
6. EuroDok: Jury Award, Best Documentary (Norway)
7. One World Brussels: Special Mention (Belgium)
8. Documenta Madrid: Second Price of the Jury (Spain)
9. Doc.fest Munich: VIKTOR Main Competition (Germany)
10. Docs Against Gravity: Millennium Award for Best Feature Documentary Film (Poland)
11. Docs Against Gravity: Canon Non Fiction Frame, Special Mention (Poland)
12. Favourites Film Festival: Bremen’s Favourite Award (Germany)
13. Andrey Tarkovsky International Film Festival: Small Mirror of Art DocFest (Russia)
14. Andrey Tarkovsky International Film Festival: Special Award Club 418 Mirror of Art DocFest (Russia)
15. Underhill Festival: Special Mention (Montenegro)
16. Gdansk DocFilm Festival: Best Cinematography (Poland)
17. Documentary Edge Festival 2015: Best International Feature Award (New Zealand)
18. Valetta Film Festival: Best Documentary (Malta)
19. Pärnu Film Festival: The Estonian People’s Award (Estonia)
20. Berlin’s Favorite Award (Germany)
21. Jameson CineFest (Hungaria)
22. NIHRFF, Youth Jury Award (Germany)
23. Hot Springs Documentary Film Festival Special Jury Prize International Documentary (USA)

Press and Contact

Press contact

Freddy Neumann

DVD and VOD distribution

Production companies

Sigrid Dyekjær for
Danish Documentary Production
Phone +45 2616 2535

Hanna Polak for Hanna Polak Films
Phone +48 795 624 981


Films Transit International
Jan Rofekamp
Phone +1 514 844 3358


Danish Film Institute
Anne Marie Kürstein
Phone +45 3374 3400


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The Crew


Director Hanna Polak

Hanna Polak, an Oscar-nominated director, graduated from the Cinematography Division of the Cinematography Institute of the Russian Federation. She worked on various movies as producer, director, cinematographer and still photographer. In 2002, she was awarded Best Producer of Documentary and Short Fiction Movies in Poland for Railway Station Ballad. In 2004 she completed work on The Children of Leningradsky in collaboration with HBO. The movie received an Oscar nomination (2005), an IDA Award, two Emmy nominations, and the Gracie Allen Award among others. Hanna has been advocating the case of homeless children all over the world. She founded and collaborated with Active Child Aid foundation and collaborates with UNICEF.

Filmography (selected titles)

The Officer’s Wife (2010)
Warsaw Battle 1920 in 3D (2010)
Cinematographer and director
Faces of Homelessness (2010)
Cinematographer and director
Kamienna Cisza (2007)
The Children of Leningradsky (2005)
Cinematographer, producer and director
Al. Tribute to Albert Maysles (2004)
Cinematographer, producer and director
Dworcowa ballade (2003)
Cinematographer and producer


Producer Sigrid Dyekjaer

Sigrid Dyekjær has worked as a producer on both feature films and documentary films since 2000. She was the producer of ‘The Monastery’, winner of the Joris Ivens Award at IDFA in 2006, and nominated for a European Film Award and several other awards. Sigrid Dyekjær is one of the most experienced producers in Denmark both when it comes to national documentary films, but also international documentary films as regards financing, producing and creative consulting on films. In her spare time she teaches at the National Film School of Denmark, and she also holds master classes and lectures at film schools around the world and courses in documentary filmmaking like ‘Bridging the Gab’, and pitch sessions around the world. She is educated in dramaturgy from the University in Århus, and has a partnership of Danish Documentary Production.

Filmography (selected titles)

The Newsroom – off the Record (2014)
Ai Weiwei: The Fake Case (2013)
Executive producer
Free the Mind (2012)
Svend (2011)
Ballroom Dancer (2011)
Executive producer
The Good Life (2011)
Cities of Speed Cairo Garbage (2009)
Mechanical Love (2007)
The Monastery (2006)


Danish Documentary Production

was founded by four award-winning directors and their producer. Director Phie Ambo, Good things Await, Free the Mind, Mechanical Love, Gambler, Family (IDFA winner), Director Pernille Rose Grønkjær, The Monastery (IDFA winner), Love Addict, Director Eva Mulvad, The Good Life, Enemies of Happiness (Sundance and IDFA winner), Director Mikala Krogh, The Newsroom – off the record, A Normal Life, Cairo Garbage, Everything is Relative. Producer Sigrid Dyekjær, Something Better to Come, The Newsroom – off the record, Ai Wei Wei: The Fake Case, The Monastery, Mechanical Love, The Good Life, Free the Mind, Love Addict, A Normal Life.


Director: Hanna Polak
Editor: Marcin Kot Bastkowski, Hanna Polak
Music: Keaton Henson, Kristian Eidnes Andersen

Producers: Sigrid Dyekjaer, Hanna Polak
Co-producer: Anne Dillon
Executive producer: Jan Rofekamp
Production companies: Danish Documentary Production, Hanna Polak Films

International sales: Films Transit International

How can you help
How can you help?

support Active child aid foundation