Daughter, a Czech short animated film by Daria Kashcheeva, has won the U.S.
Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences’ student Oscar for best
animated film from international schools.
Kascheeva, a student of Prague’s Film and TV School of the Academy of Performing Arts is the third Czech film director to win the prestigious award after Jan Svěrák and Marie Dvořáková, who won with their films Oil Gobblers (1989) and Who’s Who in Mycology (2017).
The award-giving gala ceremony in Los Angeles will take place on October 17.
One of the world’s most acclaimed surrealist filmmakers Jan Švankmajer turned 85 on Wednesday. His signature surreal style, which relies on stop-motion animations and exaggerated sounds, has not only created many world renowned films in the genre, but also influenced other major artists such as Terry Gilliam and Jose Garcia Moreno.
Animator Gene Deitch settled in Prague almost 60 years ago and directed Tom and Jerry and Popeye cartoons behind the Iron Curtain for the US market. The small number of other Americans who moved here in the communist period were one subject we discussed in the second half of an extensive interview. But I began by asking Deitch about the time the great folk singer and social activist Pete Seeger, a good friend of his, visited Czechoslovakia in 1964.
Gene Deitch, who turns 95 next month, is by some distance the US citizen longest resident in Prague. Deitch had run a successful animation studio in New York prior to the fateful meeting in 1959 with his future wife Zdenka that led him to settle in Prague soon after. From behind the Iron Curtain, he produced an Oscar-winning animated short, as well as directing Tom and Jerry and Popeye cartoons for the American market.
Czech animated films collected three awards at this year’s International
Animated Film Festival in Annecy in France. Daria Kashcheeva’s Daughter,
a short puppet film about a complicated relationship between a daughter and
her father, was voted the best film in the Graduation Short Films in
Competition. The film, produced by FAMU, also won the Junior Jury Award in
the same category.
Another FAMU project, Martin Smatana’s The Kite, which premiered at Berlinale in the Generation Kplus section, won the Young Audience Award. The annual festival in Annecy was established in 1960. This year it was attended by around 11,000 film professionals.
Mexican animator José García Moreno studied at Prague’s famous film school FAMU and apprenticed at the animation studio Bratři v triku in the last years of communist Czechoslovakia. There, he made his fist short film, and developed what would prove to be a life-long love for Czech auteurs, especially the surrealist Jan Švankmajer. Now a professor in Los Angeles, he spoke to Radio Prague about the differences between American and central European animation, Czech and Mexican humour, and the need for tactility and relation to the animated object through
The most famous Czech cartoon character, Krteček, or the Little Mole, has been the centre of legal disputes for some time. Now a court has ruled that the granddaughter of Krteček’s creator, the late Zdeněk Miler, can no longer grant licenses to produce Little Mole collectibles. Judges say that a contract Miler signed with his granddaughter shortly before his death was invalid.
The Prague Supreme Court has ruled that the granddaughter of the late
artist Zdeněk Miler, author of the famous Czech cartoon character Kreček
(Little Mole), does not own the rights to it nor can she grant licenses for
the production of Little Mole collectibles.
According to the ruling, the contract which Miler signed for his granddaughter shortly before his death is invalid. The verdict is legally binding.
The court upheld an appeal by Milena Fišerová, who was authorised to administer Miller’s copyrights in 2006 and who engaged in a drawn-out legal battle with Miller’s grand-daughter after his death in 2011.
The 58th International Film Festival for Children and Youth opens in the
town of Zlín on Friday night. The festival, which runs until June 2nd,
will screen some 300 films from around 50 counties of which 18 will have
their world premiere in Zlín.
169 films are competing for the main festival prize The Golden Slipper, the Europe Award and the Zlín Dog, among others. The festival expects to attract over 120,000 visitors.
Among the VIP guests this year is Andrea Morricone, one of the greatest contemporary Italian composers and conductors, and the son of the phenomenal composer Ennio Morricone.
Andrea Morricone composed the musical composition for the film 72 Hours in Bangkok, a film by Czech director and producer Lubomír Haltmar, which is having its world premiere screening on Monday, May 28at the festival.