Vaclav Havel conquers Czech Lions' nominations
by Viktor Palak
06/02/2012 - The annual awards for the best in Czech cinema of the past year have announced the nominees as well as first winners on February 4, with Vaclav Havel's Leaving scoring in each category, including Best Film, Best Director and Best Screenplay.
While the movie failed to ignite audiences last spring and also left the recent Czech Film Critics' Awards empty handed, a total of 12 nominations proved that the Czech Film And TV Academy has more conservative taste. The nominations also symbolize the mutual understanding between the recently deceased Havel and the filmmakers. Havel collaborated not only with Jan Nemec, but also Milos Forman. Their planned film about the Munich Agreement, however, never materialized.
The traditional epic WW2-drama about the darkest days of Czechoslovak history, Lidice, gained five nominations, including one for director of cinematography Antonio Riestra, who has previously shot films such as Amores Perros but also a stylish Czech thriller Normal [trailer], which won an award for best director at the Shanghai Film Festival in 2009. A surprising four nominations went to the moderate genre thriller Vendetta, which flopped at the box office last fall.
The first awards were handed out at the ceremony as The King's Speech [trailer, film focus] was named best foreign film of the past year, while Alois Nebel won the award for best poster. The rotoscope animation premiered in Venice last September and will soon open in France.
Five nominees were announced in each category - the Academy will now vote in the second round to narrow the selection to three names, that will be announcedalongside the winners March 3rd. Popular Czech pop singer and occasional actress Lucie Bila will be hosting the show.