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Miloš Forman

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A director and screenwriter, who along with his classmatesIvan Passer, Jaroslav Papoušek and Miroslav Ondříček made fundamental works of Czech cinema from the 1960s, such as Černý Petr (Black Peter), Lásky jedné plavovlásky (Loves of a Blonde) and Hoří, má panenko (The Firemen’s Ball).

His style was influenced by the spirit of cinéma-verité. Forman’s themes dealt with the present and the people who lived in it, and they concerned these people’s problems and their view of the world. He often worked with non-actors, and in his films he created a quirky poetic, human tragicomic vision. Because of his perceptive and critical artistic view of reality, Miloš Forman quickly became troublesome for the governing regime of the time. Like many others, Forman left Czechoslovakia in 1968 and went to the United States.

He was the only Czech filmmaker who then managed to build a very successful career. His English-language debut was the picture Taking Off (he collaborated on the screenplay with Jean-Claude Carriére). He recorded his first Oscar success with the film One Flew Over the Cuckoo’s Nest based on the book by Ken Kesey starring Jack Nicholson in the lead role. He won a second Oscar for the film Amadeus, of which shot a large part in Prague. His most recent film was Man on the Moon, starring Jim Carrey as the controversial comedian Andy Kaufman. The actor and director Ed Norton is a great admirer of Forman. Forman actually played a cameo role as a priest in Norton’s film Keeping the Faith (2000). Miloš Forman’s sons Matěj and Petr Forman are popular actors and run their own theater company.

Important films:

  • 1967 – Hoří, má panenko (The Firemen’s Ball)
  • 1971 – Taking Off – Cannes Festival Grand Jury Prize for Forman
  • 1976 – One Flew Over the Cuckoo’s Nest – five Oscars, including the director’s award
  • 1979 – Hair – a celebrated anti-war musical
  • 1984 – Amadeus – eight Oscars, a second director’s award
  • 1999 – Man on the Moon
  • 2006 - Goya's Ghosts


Added: 07.01.2010

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