What do you consider the biggest difficulty in the work of a Czech filmmaker?
It is relatively easy to make films here in the Czech Republic, but extremely difficult to form a cooperation with someone abroad. Therefore we are somewhat claustrophobic and close-set and that also makes itself felt in the themes of our films. Basically, our themes are not interesting for anyone outside our country.
So how do you personally choose themes for your movies?
I make movies the same way as I live my life. I choose themes as life brings them on and I am always worried about the result. I am inspired by everything that surrounds me, by literature, other films; nevertheless my theme is always something that pains me most in the moment I start to think about the next film. I think this approach is not ideal, but I cannot help it.
What attracts you, a film director, to theatre? You have already directed three theatre plays.
I was offered to direct in theatre, it is as simple as that. And when I tried it, I was really excited about it. Theatre is a living organism, it is less stressful; the actors become nervous only a week before premiere. That is what I like. Theatre work naturally leads to a premiere, while a film is a sequence of more or less illogical events. It is actually possible to create something during theatre rehearsals, but it is not possible to create something new while shooting a film, you have to know what you are doing already.
Which Czech film describes the Czech mentality the most?
Kolya. It is quite emotional and a bit pathetic in the same time, very human, but not too much. It does not risk anything, it is cautious but good. Czech people are the same.
Do you think that contemporary European cinema has any common tendencies?
I have no idea. I have always followed the work of a few directors I really admire and it was never a subject whether they were from Europe or not.