Documentary on Czech filmmaker Karel Zeman’s incredible special effects.
Karel Zeman (November 3, 1910, Ostroměř near Nová Paka, then Austria-Hungary – April 5, 1989, Prague, then Czechoslovakia) was a Czech animator and filmmaker. He is considered the co-founder of the Czech animated film.
He started to be interested in puppet theatre while studying at business school. Soon after, he decided to study at the Art School of Advertising in France, and after graduating he took a job with an advertising studio in Marseilles. His first experience with animated film was making an ad for soup. When he returned home he continued working in advertising, now for big Czech firms Bata and Tatra. Zeman showed a sample of his work to the filmmaker Elmar Klos, and was offered a job at the animation studio in Zlín. He accepted the job in 1943. Once there, he met animator Hermína Týrlová, who had just finished animating the all-time children’s favorite Ferda Mravenec (Ferda the Ant, based on a story by Ondřej Sekora). Together, Zeman and Týrlova made the animated film Vánoční sen (Christmas Dream) and won the award for Best Animation at the 1946 festival in Cannes. Zeman was well on his way to becoming a world-renowned animator.