Andrzej Wajda, an outstanding theatre and film director, founder of the Polish School, created the programme in 1996. The purpose of Andrzej Wajdas Festival was to offer a programme attractive to every type of audience, both to mass audience (Wreaths96, The Procession of Kings, whose full realisation took place in the presence of crowds gathered on the Main Market Square in Krakow in June 1997), and to the elite. Anyway, the idea of elite is a rather abstract one in Krakow. Both the Festival of the Union of the Theatres of Europe as well as the exhibition Thats What I Like, which were part of Andrzej Wajdas Festival, enjoyed great interest on behalf of the public.
Of course, the main attraction to the Festival, next to theatre, was film. Among other events, we could see showings of Andrzej Wajdas films, a review of Japanese films, an exhibition of Polish film posters organised on the 100th anniversary of cinema, a review of Akiro Kurosavas films, a series Ten Films That Shocked the World as well as a grand film performance on the 100th anniversary of the first film projection in Poland.