Screenshot, a new Prague art-house cinema and exhibition gallery, is the beloved brainchild of Iranian-born filmmaker and FAMU International grad Payam Razi, who stepped down as Radio Free Europe music editor in December to devote his energy to the “hybrid space”. All screenings, he says, are English-friendly “events” for film lovers eager for a festival-like, shared viewing experience. Screenshot is working with venerable Czech institutions such as the National Film Archive and Institute of Documentary film (KineDok) and the ongoing popular Írán:ci Film
Dcera (Daughter), the puppet stop-motion movie created by FAMU student Daria Kashcheeva has been nominated for an Oscar in the category “best animated short“. It would be the latest and most significant in a series of awards that the 15- minute production has assembled over the past year. Meanwhile, The Painted Bird, written and directed by Václav Marhoul has missed out on the nomination for “best foreign film“.
The ninth annual Írán:ci Film Festival, this year under the theme of ‘Escape”, gets underway on Wednesday. Ahead of the opening, I spoke to festival cofounder and artistic director Kaveh Daneshmand about how the event has developed over the past decade, what to watch out for this year, and filmmaking in Iran before the revolution and in troubled times today.
One of the most compelling and stylish Czech films of 2019 was A Certain Kind of Silence, the feature debut from Michal Hogenauer. The largely English-language work depicts a Czech girl who becomes an au pair in an unnamed Northern European state only to discover her host family are members of a sinister sect. When we spoke, the conversation took in the challenges of shooting abroad and the ways in which directors can pander to festival programmers. But I first asked Hogenauer about the inspiration for the story in A Certain Kind of Silence.
The pictures Old-Timers and Owners have received the most nominations, five
each, in the Czech Film Critics’ Awards. Old-Timers is about a geriatric
pair seeking revenge on a communist-era prosecutor, while Owners centres on
a meeting of people who all have apartments in the same building. WWII
drama The Painted Bird got four nominations.
The winners of the Czech Film Critics’ Awards will be announced on February 1.
This summer, director and screenwriter Ivan Fíla’s historical novel about Dr. František Kriegel – the only Prague Spring leader not to sign the Moscow Protocol validating the 1968 invasion of Czechoslovakia – became a bestseller. That success led Fíla to return to a “fairy tale thriller” film script he’d set aside long ago and turn it into a novel.
The 1966 film Daisies by Věra Chytilová has come sixth in an extensive new BBC poll of the 100 greatest works by female directors. But what makes the surreal, anarchic Czechoslovak New Wave film such a classic? I discussed Daisies with journalist Hynek Pallas, who wrote a description of it for the BBC project.
The Czech film director Václav Marhoul has joined CAA, a top Hollywood talent agency, Deadline reported. His latest movie, The Painted Bird, was in competition at the Venice International Film Festival and is the Czech Republic’s submission for the Best International Feature Film in the Academy Awards. Marhoul’s previous works include the war drama Tobruk.
Director and script writer Vojtěch Jasný, one of the leading individuals involved in Czechoslovak New Wave cinema has died at the age of 93. Mr. Jasný was resposible for films such as All My Compatriots and When the Cat Comes for which he won the Cannes Special Jury Prize. Following the Warsaw Pact invasion in 1968, Jasný emigrated to the United States where he continued to work as a film maker.
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“There is good, better and then there is the USSR.” – New book depicts life in communist Czechoslovakia through memories of people who experienced it
CzechTourism head hints attracting tourists no longer agency’s main goal
“The only solution is political” – Organisers of major anti-government protests in Czechia announce plans for the future