The 43rd Karlovy Vary International Film Festival closed on Saturday in traditional fashion with the handing out of Crystal Globe awards. It was a Danish film, ‘Terribly Happy’, which scooped the out-and-out top prize, though the Czechs were represented in other categories – with the Crystal Globes for best actor and best actress this year remaining firmly on Czech soil.
My guest for this edition of One on One is Ivan Passer, who this week received a Crystal Globe in Karlovy Vary for his lifelong contribution to world cinema. The president of this year’s festival jury fled communist Czechoslovakia in 1968, after directing what has been voted one of the best Czech films ever made – ‘Intimate Lighting’ is a black-and-white new wave classic telling the story of two friends reunited. In more recent years, Passer has worked in Hollywood, producing movies such as ‘Cutter’s Way’ and ‘Stalin’ to much critical acclaim.
This week, the Czech music world mourned the death of one of its more prominent stars, Karel Hála, who died aged 74 in the Czech capital, Prague. Mr Hála was known as a singer of swing music, similar to the rat-pack music sung by the likes of Frank Sinatra and Dean Martin. Here’s a clip from the song “Že prý někde padají ” or the more familiar title “Pennies From Heaven.”
The International Film Festival in Karlovy Vary is drawing to a close and film fans are cramming cinema halls to see as much as they can in the remaining 24 hours. But few of those watching the movies get a look behind the scenes or find out how much hard work and preparation has gone into making the festival a success. Some time ago I met with Petr Alexander who is responsible for providing subtitles to the films shown at the festival. For him and his team of translators, the festival starts much earlier than for the rest of us:
Karlovy Vary is best-known for its health-giving waters. I’m right now inside the Sprudl Colonnade, or Vridelni kolonada, where people are filling up their special spa water mugs with all types of the hot, sulphurous stuff. But, for eight days a year, the attention shifts elsewhere, and a different crowd comes to Karlovy Vary for the biggest film festival in Central and Eastern Europe. This year, the festival has been bigger, busier and better than ever, here are just a few of the highlights…
The New Hollywood section at the Karlovy Vary International Film Festival is back due to popular demand. This year, director Paul Mazursky and cinematographer Vilmos Zsigmond are just two of the big names presenting the festival’s retrospective of 1970s American films. The period, which spawned movies such as ‘Easy Rider’, ‘Bob and Carol and Ted and Alice’ and ‘McCabe and Mrs Miller’, is often thought of as one of Tinseltown’s finest. Variety magazine’s Steven Gaydos helped bring some of these classic Hollywood films to the Karlovy Vary film
The president of this year’s jury at the Karlovy Vary Film Festival is legendary Czech new wave director Ivan Passer. The man who made his name working with Miloš Forman, and then solo with films like ‘Intimate Lighting’ and ‘A Boring Afternoon’, has accepted the prestigious post and returned to the Czech Republic some 40 years after emigrating to the United States.
Monday at Karlovy Vary International Film Festival saw the world premiere of ‘Night Owls’ – one of the two Czech films in this year’s competition. The movie was directed by Oscar-nominated animator, Michaela Pavlátová, and stars the young Czech talents Martha Issová and Jiří Mádl. In the run up to the big screening, Rosie Johnston caught up with Michaela Pavlátová on the terrace at the spa town’s Hotel Thermal.
One of the most anticipated stars to appear at this year’s Karlovy Vary International Film Festival was Robert De Niro. Thousands turned out on Friday to catch a glimpse of the actor as he walked up the red carpet at a downtown hotel. De Niro’s star turn marked the opening of the film festival and, as Rosie Johnston reports, there’s more on its way.