The Painted Bird is the Czech Oscar candidate

16 September 2019

Czech Film

The Painted Bird is the Czech Oscar candidate

Czech Film

The Painted Bird is the Czech Oscar candidate


The Czech Film and Television Academy selected The Painted Bird as this year's Czech Oscar candidate. The Czech-Ukrainian-Slovak drama written, directed and produced by Václav Marhoul, will represent the Czech Republic as the official submission at the 92nd Academy Awards in the Best International Feature Film category.

The members of the academy were choosing from 10 Czech feature and documentary films that had been submitted by their producers. The other films that recieved significant number of votes were On the Roof directed by Jiří Mádl and Golden Sting by Radim Špaček. The voting took place from 1st to 13th September 2019.

Václav Marhoul (Tobruk, 2008 and Smart Philip, 2003) worked on The Painted Bird, based on the eponymous novel by Jerzy Kosiński, for 11 years, and created a meticulous 35mm black and white evocation of wild, primitive Eastern Europe at the bloody close of the World War II. 

The shooting of the film took about 16 months at 43 different locations in the Ukraine, Slovakia, Poland and the Czech Republic and the cast includes such names as Udo Kier, Stellan Skarsgård, Harvey Keitel, Julian Sands or Barry Pepper. The film was produced by Marhoul's own company Silver Screen in co-production with Directory Films (UA), PubRes (SK), and Czech Television, Eduard and Milada Kučera, Innogy and Richard Kaucký. International sales and festivals are handled by Celluloid Dreams.

The film world-premiered at the 76th Venice International Film Festival in the main competition, Venezia 76. (READ MORE)

After that, The Painted Bird had its North American Premiere at Toronto International Film Festival in Special Presentations. (READ MORE)

The nominations for Oscars will be announced on 13th January 2020 and the ceremony will take place on 9th February 2020 in Los Angeles.

So far two Czechoslovak and one Czech film have managed to get the award for the Best International Feature Film. In 1965 it was The Shop on Main Street by Ján Kádár and Elmar Klos, in 1967 the film Closely Watched Trains by Jiří Menzel won the prize and in 1996 it was Kolya by Jan Svěrák.


The Painted Bird

The film follows the journey of The Boy, entrusted by his persecuted parents to an elderly foster mother. The old woman soon dies, and the Boy is on his own, wandering through the country-side, from village to farmhouse. As he…


Václav Marhoul





Czech Film Center

Národní 28, 110 00 Praha 1
Česká republika


Contact us