PRAGUE — Thirty years after quintessential Czech new wave film “All My Good Countrymen” was released, that film’s director Vojtech Jasny has returned to his homeland to make a feature film.
“Return to Paradise Lost,” inspired by the helmer’s own experiences, looks at the life of an emigre and his transatlantic relationship with a small town school-teacher against a social tapestry of other personal tales.
The budget of $2 million comes from an array of American and European sources, including producer Lumar Prods., which deliberately avoided the more traditional Euro route of TV financing for its first feature.
The long anticipated project took some three years to get into production.
While Jasny has earned international renown, including major prizes at Cannes for the 1968 “Countrymen” and his 1963 “Cassandra,” he never managed to establish as strong a career abroad, unlike fellow emigre Milos Forman.
But for an entire generation of Czechoslovaks, “All My Good Countrymen” tells the story of their post World War II tragedy.
Another Czech new wave icon making an unexpected return to the big screen is actor Vladimir Pucholt, the young star of Forman’s “Loves of a Blonde” and “Black Peter.” He is taking a break from his medical practice in England to play Adam, the lead role in “Return.”
Jasny is using his native rural Moravia and New York for the setting of his “Return.” He began a two-month shoot in Moravia on Aug. 3, to be followed by a month in New York.