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The Czech Film and Television Academy has selected “Fair Play” to represent the country in the Best Foreign Language Film category at the upcoming Academy Awards.

The film, directed by Andrea Sedlakova, follows a nineteen year-old sprinter who gets involved with the state-controlled doping program during the country’s normalization era.

The film was produced by Negativ with Katerina Černa and Pavel Strnad.

“Our film tells the story of a sprinter but the preparation and shooting of the film was rather a marathon, a long distance run,” said Sedlakova. “Four years passed between the moment when I read a newspaper article about the state-controlled doping in Czechoslovak communist sport and the shooting itself. During those years I wrote nineteen versions of the screenplay and the producers from Negativ were taking care of the finances. Then the shooting of the film was a sport performance for everybody.”