“Eggality” theme for One World this year

One World 2013

Equality is the theme for this years One World International Human Rights Documentary Film Festival. The 15th festival takes place from 3 to 14 March in Prague before setting off around the Czech Republic. The “punny” theme is take further in the Ostrich egg in the hen yard photos that promote the festival. Head in the sand could also be added to this… Find out more about the festival and theme.



The festival says this about this years categories:

Among the 2013 One World programme categories are: The Power of the Media – investigating the influence of information in the contemporary world; Side Effects – featuring films about health care in the West and developing countries; Journeys to Freedom – featuring films about non-democratic countries in which the People in Need works; and So-Called Civilisation – focusing on lifestyle aspects in close relationship to the nature. Films featured in the Main Competition and the Right to Know categories will compete for the festival awards. Last but not least, the festival will also present the latest Czech documentaries as well.

The wierd and wonderful world of Zeman

Karel  Zeman that is…

The Karel Zeman Museum has released DVDs of three films by the classic Czech film-maker. Digitally restored from the original films, and with english subtitles are:

  • The Fabulous World of Jules Verne  (Vynález zkázy 1958)
  • The Fabulous Baron Munchausen (Baron Prášil 1961)
  • The Journey to the Beginning of Time (Cesta do pravěku1955)

I think this clip is from the Fabulous World of Jules Verne. Let me know if I’m wrong!

You can buy the DVDs from the museum for a rather good value Kč129 (about £4.30). They say they’ll send them anywhere if you email them here: info@muzeumkarlazemana.cz

If you’re in Prague, why not visit the museum? It’s at the Castle end of the Charles Bridge.


…another place, other prizes

Drahomíra Vihanová

Drahomíra Vihanová at Dukla Reform, Jihlava, October 2012

…meanwhile a short distance away from Prague in the Kino Mír, Beroun, FITES, the Czech Film and Televsion Union, held their own awards. Legendary director Drahomíra Vihanová picked up the Vladislav Vančura award to those who have shaped the history of Czech cinema. Amongst previous winners are František Vláčil,  Jiří Menzel, Jan Švankmajer, and Jan Němec.

Drahomíra was the subject of the documentary film Umanutá (Stubborn) shown at the Jihlava International Documentary Film Festival in October. Blatant excuse to reel out the photo of Drahhomíra I took after the screening.

…and the winners are…

Sadly not able to watch this live on Czech TV in the UK. However here are the winners from the Czech Critics Awards:


Love in the grave (Láska v hrobě) – Producer Yekot film, directed by David Vondráček


In the shade (Ve stínu) – Ivan Trojan

BEST ACTRESS Supporting Actor

Four Suns (Čtyři slunce) – Klára Melíšková


Four Suns (Čtyři slunce) – Bohdan Sláma


In the shade (Ve stínu) – Adam Sikora


In the shade (Ve stínu) – Jan P. Muchow, Michal Novinski


Olmo Omerzu

BEST ACTOR Supporting Actor

Sunday League – Joe’s last match (Okresní přebor – Poslední zápas Pepika Hnátka) – Ondřej Vetchý

BEST ACTRESS in a Leading Role

 Waste city death (Odpad město smrt) – Gabriela Míčová


In the shade (Ve stínu) – David Ondříček


In the shade (Ve stínu)- Producer Lucky Man Films, directed by David Ondříček



Happy Birthday Barrandov!

Barrandov sign The famous Barrandov Studios in Prague celebrates its 80th birthday today, 25 January 2013. The studios were vital to the growth of the Czechoslovak film industry during the 30s. They formed the backbone of the nationalised film industry in the communist era, and sadly fell into trouble since the 1990s.

The studio focusses mainly on being a cheap and skilled facility for the global film industry. At it’s height, it was making up to 70 home grown feature films a year. The costume department (fundus) hires costumes out worldwide, and hosts tours of costumes from productions. The film The Invisible Hand of the Market: The Privatisation of Barrandov was screened at the Jihlava International Documentary Film Festival in October 2012


Pevnost 2The winner of the best Czech documentary at the 2012 Jihlava International Documentary Film Festival has it’s official premier today, 24 January 2013, at the Hungarian Institute, Prague.  Fortress (Pevnost) was filmed semi-secretly in the strange post-soviet state of Transnistria.

The film was given a limited release in December so that it could be entered for the 2012 Czech Lion awards. Here’s the Czech trailer:

Cloud lifts from Zuzana Piussi

The threat of prosecution has lifted for Slovak documentary film maker Zuzana Piussi. The case has cast a shadow over Slovak film makers, who have felt threatened if they pursue stories linked to the usual suspects of corruption, politicians and the legal system. Read more about the story here.

Zuzana PiussiZuzana’s films include Disease of the Third Power, a documentary about black holes in the Slovak judiciary system and the state of law in Slovakia. Her most recent film is Od Fica do Fica, again a study of the Slovak political system. See the trailer here:


What films will win awards this year?

Ok, so no Czech films in the Oscar nominations this year. But some great films from last year are fighting for the Czech critic prizes and the Czech Lions.

The Czech Film Critics Awards take place on Saturday 26 January at Archa Theatre, Prague. Nominations are dominated by the films In the Shadow and Four Suns. Find details of all the nominations here.

cesky-lev-2012The Czech Lions (Český lev) are the big prize: they have been held by the Czech Film and Television Academy every year since 1994. Nominations are announced on 2 February with the awards taking place at Kino Lucerna in Prague on Saturday 2 March, . I’ll be in Prague then, but you’re more likely to catch me here: U Českého Lva. Find out more about shortlisted films. If You’re in Prague, you can catch an exhibition of the posters for the films in the Lucerna arcade.

Here’s the trailer for In the Shadow: