Karlovy Vary Film Fest 2022: Support for Ukraine

The Czech fest, which will take place in July, announced the recipient of its annual President’s Award, a major new restoration and a new initiative.

Karlovy Vary Film Festival, one of Europe’s oldest film fests, began to show elements of its 56th edition, which will take place in its eponymous Czech city from July 1-9.

Showing support for Ukraine, KVIFF will host the Works-in-Progress program of the Odesa Film Fest, which cannot be held due to the ongoing war with Russia.

“Broad solidarity with war-afflicted Ukraine must also include support for the country’s cultural life, which at this moment has come to a halt,” Hugo Rosák, head of KVIFF’s Industry Department, said. “As a film festival, we have tried to find ways of supporting Ukrainian cinema, and we are glad that we have managed to work with the Odesa film festival to find a meaningful form of cooperation.”

Anna Machuh, OIFF’s general director, said: “We are honored to have this opportunity to show Ukrainian cinema, talent and culture to the world.”

KVIFF will bestow its President’s Award — which recognizes outstanding figures in Czech cinema — to the actor, playwright, screenwriter, and director Boleslav Polívka.

The release stated, “For more than two decades, Bolek Polívka has left a similarly distinctive mark on Czech cinema. His most remarkable roles include the portrayal of priest in Vladimír Michálek’s Forgotten Light (1996), which earned the Czech Lion for best actor and another award in the same category. He later also earned Czech Lion for best actor for Divided We Fall (dir. Jan Hřebejk, 2000), which was nominated for the Best Foreign Film Oscar.

KVIFF helps to restore classic Czech films, and this year it is Jaromil Jireš’ 1969 Czech New Wave The Joke (1969), which it will also show during the fest. The film’s digital restoration was organized by the Karlovy Vary International Film Festival in collaboration with the National Film Archive and the State Fund for Cinema, and was performed at UPP and Soundsquare using original sound and film negatives stored at the National Film Archive.

KVIFF Talents

The fest is launching a new year-round initiative, KVIFF Talents, the objective of which is “to identify talented filmmakers” — from the Czech Republican and Slovakia, for now — “and to support the creation of creative audiovisual projects with international ambitions possessing a high level of originality.”

Select filmmakers will receive financing for development, mentoring from experts and chance to present their projects to potential producers, partners, and investors at the fest. “The program will promote greater originality, creative boldness, and international ambitions by filmmakers from our region,” noted KVIFF executive director Kryštof Mucha.