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Havel Film Profile

October 9, 2011


The National Gallery in Washington presents the Havel Film Profile, a collection of selected Czechoslovak and Czech films related to the life and work of Václav Havel. The films were chosen by the renowned American curator Peggy Parsons during a study stay in Prague. The Václav Havel Library in Prague provided English versions and secured rights for non-commercial screenings in the US until the end of next year. The films will first be presented on 11–13 October 2013 in the auditorium of the National Gallery in Washington as part of the Mutual Inspirations Festival, which is organised by the Embassy of the Czech Republic in Washington and is this year dedicated to Václav Havel.

Havel Film Profile

The Havel Film Profile is a collection of nine films linked to the life and work of Václav Havel. As well as being presented at the festival in Washington, it will – in cooperation with the diplomatic missions of other countries – travel around the entire United States in a series of non-commercial screenings until the end of 2014. The Havel Film Profile was put together by Peggy Parsons, head of film programmes at the National Gallery of Art (NGA), in conjunction with the National Film Archive and the Václav Havel Library during a curatorial stay in Prague at the turn of May and June 2013. The NGA’s film department is regarded in the United States as a guarantor of high quality with regard to the films it recommends, while Parsons this year received the Artis Bohemiae Amicis–Friends of Czech Art award for her long-term support for Czech film.

At its own cost, the Václav Havel Library had English subtitles created for films that did not previously have them (The Mist, And the Beggar’s Opera Again, Who is Václav Havel) and had the majority of the selected films transferred in HD quality to Blu-ray. Working closely with the National Film Archive in Prague and Czech Television, it secured licenses to screen the films in the United States from September 2013 to the end of 2014.

The films selected are:

1. Postava k podpírání / Joseph Killian aka A Person to Be Supported

dir. Pavel Juráček, 1963, 38 min.

2.  Každý mladý muž / Every Young Man

dir. Pavel Juráček, 1965, 83 min.

3. Mlha / The Mist

dir. Radúz Činčera, 1966, 28 min.

4.  Srdce nad Hradem / The Heart Above the Castle

dir. Jan Němec, 2007, 48 min.

5.  O slavnosti a hostech / A Report on the Party and the Guests

dir. Jan Němec, 1966, 68 min.

6. Nezvaný host / The Uninvited Guest

dir. Vlastimil Venclík, 1969, 22 min.

7. A znovu Žebrácká opera / And the Beggar's Opera Again

dir. Olga Sommerová, 1996, 60 min.

8.  Kdo je Václav Havel / Who Is Vaclav Havel

dir. Helena Matiášová, 1977, 11 min.

9.  Odcházení / Leaving

dir. Václav Havel, 2011, 91 min.

The Havel Film Package is being presented for the first time as part of the Mutual Inspirations Festival 2013, which is being held by the Embassy of the Czech Republic in Washington from September 5, 2013 to 31 October, 2013 and recalls the life, work and legacy of the dissident, playwright and former Czech president Václav Havel. Following editions dedicated to Tomáš Garrigue Masaryk, Antonín Dvořák and Miloš Forman, it is the fourth year of the festival, which highlights the closeness of Czech-American ties. This year it includes more than 30 events at important venues in the US capital such as Georgetown University, the National Gallery of Arts and the Library of Congress. Alongside those prepared by the Václav Havel Library in Prague, audiences can enjoy such films as Petr Jančárek’s Václav Havel, Prague–Castle, Jan Novák’s Citizen Havel Goes on Vacation and Jana Chytilová’s documentary The Plastic People of the Universe, as well as theatre and music performances. The Václav Havel Library played a role in the installation of the Havel’s Place memorial at Georgetown University and provided an exhibition of photographs by Bohdan Holomíček, among other activities.

Details and a programme of events can be found at:

Admission to the majority of events is free of charge.

The festival’s patrons are Dagmar Havlová, former US secretary of state Madeleine Albright and former Czech foreign minister Karel Schwarzenberg.


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