Czech film biz at rest after active year

'Alien vs Predator,' 'Tristan & Isolde' still to shoot

PRAGUE — Film production in the Czech Republic is winding down for the approaching holidays. After logging the country’s most productive year by far — an estimated $300 million spent on all film production, up 52% from 2002’s previous record year — Prague, the main focus of production, seems positively calm.

Terry Gilliam had something extra to be thankful for when “The Brothers Grimm” wrapped its 22-plus-week shoot Nov. 27.

Film was originally skedded to shoot in 17 weeks, but a replacement cinematographer (Newton Thomas Siegel) and the complicated effects resulted in the delay.

Despite some rumors that Gilliam was headed toward another “Lost in La Mancha” mire, local production vets were sanguine about the filming.

Shots using star Matt Damon (who plays one half of the brotherly duo, along with Heath Ledger) did have to be rushed in the final weeks when his end-of-shoot date cut into the prolonged schedule.

Popular on Variety

Film was shot on location and at the Barrandov studio’s soundstages and back lot. New production outfit Reforma Films handled local production services for producers Daniel Bobker, Charles Roven and John D. Schofield. Pic co-stars Jonathan Pryce and Lena Headey.

That leaves the relatively low-budget “Tristan & Isolde,” with a cast of young up-and-comers directed by Kevin Reynolds for producer Moshe Diamant, and splashy sci-fi pic “Alien vs Predator.” “Tristan & Isolde” is due to wrap by mid-December, and “Alien vs Predator” will break for the holidays.

Titles possible for Prague shoots next year include “Oliver Twist” by Roman Polanski, said to be nearly confirmed, and “Watchmen,” a large action film for Revolution.

And 2004 could be the year the impossible happens, if Tom Cruise (once the bane of Prague when he publicly denounce the Czechs after filming “Mission: Impossible” here) returns with his latest installment of the series.

More Film

  • Dev Patel Toronto International Film Festival

    Film News Roundup: Dev Patel to Star in 'Flash Crash' Financial Thriller

    In today’s film news roundup, Dev Patel will portray a market whiz in a “Flash Crash” movie, the late Marty Sklar is honored at UCLA, “The Conversation” is getting a re-release and Ellen Page’s documentary gets a trailer. PROJECT LAUNCH Dev Patel will star in the adaptation of “Flash Crash: A Trading Savant, a Global [...]

  • Police guard the scenery in front

    Mass Shooting in Germany Raises Security Concerns for Berlin Film Festival

    A mass shooting in the West German city of Hanau has raised security concerns for the Berlin Film Festival, which kicks off on Thursday. Local media reports late Wednesday indicate that several people are dead following a shooting. Eight people are believed to have been killed while five others are injured. An unknown assailant is [...]

  • Foto: ©2019 TOM TRAMBOWProjekt: „Lassie Come

    Global Screen Sells 'Lassie Come Home' to More Than 44 Countries (EXCLUSIVE)

    Munich-based world sales company Global Screen has pre-sold the new adaptation of Eric Knight novel’s “Lassie Come Home,” whose canine character was first brought to the big screen more than 75 years ago, to more than 44 countries. Territories include Italy (Lucky Red), France (Mediawan Rights), Scandinavia (Angel Scandinavia), Israel (Film House), CIS (Volga Film), [...]

  • Paramount Players

    Paramount Players Loses Executives Matt Dines, Ali Bell

    Paramount Players has lost two of its executives, with Matt Dines and Ali Bell leaving their posts as executive vice presidents of development and production. A spokesman for Paramount told Variety that there are no plans to shutter the three-year-old division in the wake of the departures. Wyck Godfrey, Paramount’s motion pictures group president, remains [...]

  • Anya Taylor Joy Emma Premiere

    Anya Taylor-Joy on Playing Jane Austen's Clever, Callous Protagonist in 'Emma'

    It was an evening of elegance at the Los Angeles premiere of Focus Features’ “Emma” on Tuesday night. The red carpet was lined with pastel floral arrangements at the DGA Theater, priming visitors to be transported to the ornate pageantry of Georgian-era England, as depicted in this new adaptation of Jane Austen’s classic tale. Anya [...]

  • Tom Holland Chris Pratt Onward Premiere

    Tom Holland and Chris Pratt Show Off Real-Life Bond at Pixar's 'Onward' Premiere

    Pixar’s new movie “Onward” marks a reunion of sorts for Tom Holland and Chris Pratt. The two actors, who both have ties to Disney’s Marvel Cinematic Universe and most recently teamed in “Avengers: Endgame” as Spider-Man and Star-Lord, play brothers in the animated fantasy adventure. Their friendship has become a highlight of “Onward’s” promotional tour [...]

More From Our Brands

Access exclusive content