The new HBO Europe series “The Sleepers” is a six-part spy drama set in pre-Velvet Revolution former communist Czechoslovakia.
Zacharias recalled the year that brought the decades-long communist regime to an end. “That was a big year. It was a huge change, when the communist system finally broke down,” said Zacharias.
Zacharias and the show’s scribe Ondrej Gabriel were committed to making the show faithful to real life events, including the language. “This has to be in Czech, because it’s a Czech story,” said Zacharias.
Nykl was excited to take on a role outside of his typical sci-fi and superhero portrayals. “This is new. This is exciting,” Nykl said. “I think it’s also new for the Czech Republic to have an espionage drama. It’s a great genre.”
Zacharias said he kept in mind both Czech and foreign audiences when creating the show. “It is tricky because you have to deal with knowledge that local audiences know the situation much more than the foreign audience,” he said. “You have to be clever about it, not to be too descriptive for the Czechs, but descriptive enough for the foreign audience.”
Nykl added, “I really do think that there is a universal spy thriller genre that people will recognize, and this is a really original Czech take on it.”
Patricia Clarkson discussed women in film and her rise through independent cinema with Variety‘s Peter Debruge on Variety Critics Corner presented by HBO Europe at Karlovy Vary Film Festival. “There are a lot of big producers, they’re all male,” said Clarkson. “They are now realizing not only is it politically correct to have women writing, [...]
Director Tim Mielants speaks with Variety chief film critic Peter Debruge on his new film “Patrick” and its use of nudity at the Variety Critics Corner presented by HBO Europe. “I think all the actors felt that it wasn’t about nudity, that we were trying to tell another story. Actually, we all considered it a [...]
The new HBO Europe series “The Sleepers” is a six-part spy drama set in pre-Velvet Revolution former communist Czechoslovakia. Director Ivan Zacharias (“Wasteland”) and actor David Nykl (“Stargate”) joined Variety film critic Peter Debruge to discuss the series at the Variety Critics Corner, presented by HBO Europe. Zacharias recalled the year that brought the decades-long communist regime to an [...]
Screen Actors Guild Award nominee Leonardo DiCaprio stopped by the Variety platform to talk about his own early days as an actor. Including a time where he channeled fellow nominee Joaquin Phoenix during one of his earlier auditions. Phoenix would go on to win the SAG award that night for actor, and namecheck DiCaprio as the […]
SAG Award winner Jennifer Aniston didn’t always get every job she auditioned for, “I wanted to be a waitress at the saloon restaurant in New York City,” Aniston told Variety. “You had to be in roller skates. It was a really horrible audition.” The recent Instagram convert, Aniston was hesitant to lavish too much praise […]
SAG Foundation president and award-winning actor Courtney B. Vance doesn’t understand why last week’s Oscar nominations were so white (again). “I don’t know why because I know the projects are there,” he told Variety’s Marc Malkin at Sunday’s Screen Actors Guild Awards, referring to the amount of films directed and starring people of color in 2019. Only two of […]