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VENICE: Václav Marhoul is the first Czech director to score a place in the Venice competition lineup since Jiri Menzel’s The Life and Extraordinary Adventures of Private Ivan Chonkin in 1994. The Czech, Slovak and Ukrainian coproduction The Painted Bird is based on the acclaimed 1965 novel by Jerzy Kosinski and makes tough viewing with its uncompromising take on the pain and suffering of its main character.

The 76th Venice Film Festival opened with a pre-festival screening of the restored Czech classic Extase directed by Gustav Machaty and a Czech and Slovak film The Painted Bird screened in the main competition for the first time in 25 years. FNE TV spoke to Michal Bregant Director of Czech National Film Archives, Czech director Vaclav Marhoul and Slovak producer Zuzana Mistrikova about this year’s festival.

VENICE: American director Todd Phillips was awarded the top prize for his film Joker in the main competition of 76th Venice Film Festival, which took place from 28 August to 7 September 2019. Polish director Roman Polański took home the Silver Lion Grand Jury Prize for the French/Italian coproduction An Officer and a Spy.

VENICE: Film New Europe celebrated European audiovisual innovation with a cocktail in the garden of the Venice VR Island on Sunday. FNE and several members of its team invited participants and visitors to join them for a glass of prosecco and to learn more about how FNE is promoting AV innovation on its online platform www.filmneweurope.com

VENICE: FNE spoke to Michal Bregant, Director of Czech National Film Archives, about the selection of Extase (Czechoslovakia, 1934) directed by Gustav Machaty for Venice Classics section of this year’s festival and why there is an increasing interest in restored classics at international film festivals.

FNE asked Pascal Diot what is new this year at the Venice Production Bridge and how it has evolved since its inception as well as what are some of the high profile projects participating from filmmakers from Central and Eastern Europe.

American director Brady Corbet arrives in Venice in competition with his second film Vox Luxwhich is a more mature work in the same genre as his first film The Childhood of a Leader. Corbet is interested in examining key events that define their era using fictional characters the just could be modelled on unnamed real life historical figures that we already know.

American indie director Rick Alverson has scored a slot in the Venice competition lineup with his fifth and most ambitious film The Mountain.  His earlier offbeat dark comedies Entertainmentand The Comedy established his reputation as a Sundance regular who did not hesitate to challenge audiences with difficult but nonetheless visually beautiful films.

Director Damien Chazelle makes a quantum shift with his Venice competition entry First Manafter his hugely successful, light-hearted homage to the Hollywood musical La La Land

The Coen brothers have scored a slot in the main Venice Film Festival competition with The Ballad of Buster Scruggs which despite beginning life as a Netflix series is slated for theatrical release after the festival.