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Shooting is under way on a new Filip Renč film, a portrayal of a troubled soldier called Guard Nr. 47, just as the director is winding up postproduction of a live-action thriller for Czech TV channel Nova.

Films to be screened at the 11th International Festival of Documentary Films which opens today (Oct. 23) in Jihlava will be presented online for the first time via the Internet film portal Doc-Air.

Tomas Vorel´s new film High School (www.gymplfilm.cz) has grabbed third place among Czech viewers after its first two weeks of screening, surprising some critics.

Having made its reputation on two Czech films that have become international hits, British-Czech production company Taskovski Films is aggressively expanding its activities to include Serbia and Bosnia.

Renowned Czech director Jiří Menzel´s film I Served the King of England, the country's entry for best foreign-language film at the Academy awards in February, is also the hottest-selling domestic picture, according to the Czech Film Center (www.filmcenter.cz).

The Czech video market will stay with the classical DVD format longer than elsewhere in Europe, partly because it’s still lucrative, says a top DVD distributor. But some films produced in the new DVD technology may show up by the end of the year.

A Prague court is hearing the case of two men accused of stealing a copy of renowned Slovak director Jakub Jakubisko's Bathory, Central Europe's most expensive home-grown film to date, in the third piracy prosecution by Czech authorities in a month.

Leading Czech director Petr Zelenka is now in post-production with his new film The Karamazovs, played by members of the well-known Prague-based Dejvice Theater.

A special preview is planned today in Prague for Lost Holiday, a unique Czech detective story about global communication which won a Crystal Globe at this year's Karlovy Vary International Film Festival.

Czech President Vaclav Klaus, not known as an avid supporter of Czech cinema, now says he would be in favor of "modest support" for the film sector - an opinion that may influence negotiations on next year's state culture budget.

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