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.
The Bulgarian-Greek road comedy “The Father” won the main prize at the
54th Karlovy Vary International Film Festival, picking up the Crystal Globe
at the closing gala ceremony on Saturday night.
The jury also singled out the German psychological family drama “Lara” by Jan-Ole Gerster for which Corinna Harfouch took the Best Actress Award. Milan Ondrik won Best Actor for his lead role in the Slovak-Czech family drama “Let There Be Light”, while Belgian director Tim Mielants won the director’s prize for his film “Patrick”.
The viewers’ award went to Olga Sommerova’s document “Jiří Suchy – Tackling Life with Ease”.
One of the main celebrities at the festival Patricia Clarkson got a standing ovation as she received the Crystal Globe for contribution to world cinema, as did Julianne Moore at the opening of the festival.
For over a decade and a half, the Karlovy Vary film festival has been bringing works from the former communist bloc to broader international attention with its flagship East of the West competition. How has the industry in the region developed over the years? And what is the importance of East of the West to Karlovy Vary? I discussed those questions with its programmer, Lenka Tyrpáková.
One of the most discussed Czech films at the Karlovy Vary festival is Old-Timers (Staříci) by Martin Dušek and Ondřej Provazník. It’s based on a real story from the late 1990s of two men’s plot to kill a notorious Communist prosecutor, Karel Vaš, who four decades earlier had secured prison terms for them and the death sentence for several of their friends. I discussed the film with its directors, starting with Dušek.
Ticket sales for the 54th edition of the Karlovy Vary International Film
Festival (KVIFF) began on Thursday morning.
This year’s festival features around 180 films, of which 50 will be world or European premieres. Most films will have several screenings, allowing visitors more opportunities to get tickets.
The main stars of this edition will be Oscar-winning actress Julianne Moore and her husband, director Bart Freundlich, who along with the actor Billy Crudup will present his new film "After the Wedding".
Other notable guests include actress Patricia Clarkson, who along with Moore will receive the festival’s Crystal Globe for Outstanding Artistic Contribution to World Cinema, and actor and director Casey Affleck, who has an Oscar, Bafta, and Golden Globe to his credit. He will present “Light of My Life,” which he wrote, directed and produced
“Love, tolerance and creative freedom aren’t just for fairytales”. That’s the central message of a new documentary called The Art of Dissent, which celebrates artistic engagement in Czechoslovakia before and after the 1968 Soviet-led invasion. Written, directed and filmed by the American intellectual historian James D Le Sueur, the film aims to debunk the myth that life behind the Churchillian ‘Iron Curtain’ was static and grey, and to inspire viewers through the messages of Václav Havel and fellow former dissidents.
Measures taken as over 60 percent of Czech Republic hit by extreme drought
Barbora Strýcová, 33, in “best form” ahead of Wimbledon semi-final against Serena Williams
Beer, schnitzel and mushroom picking – unique set of emojis captures Czech soul
Gene Deitch, Part 1: The Oscar-winning US animator who made Tom and Jerry cartoons in communist Prague
Holocaust child survivor’s dream of building memorial to child victims of the Holocaust comes true