Karel Zeman’s ‘painted cinema’: wondrous, playful, intriguing films @ The Panorama

The Stolen Airship (1966)

Live action, special effects, painted backdrops, puppets and animation are all ingeniously combined in the fantastic films of Czech filmmaker Karel Zeman. 50 years after the earliest days of cinema, Zeman returned to the magical techniques of Georges Mélies to create films of unmatched beauty.

Now, courtesy of the Velaslavasay Panorama, in collaboration with the Czech Consulate of LA, we can enjoy a big-screen projection, in a mini-series of this cinematic artist’s work at the always-fun Panorama. The upcoming film series title is The Painted Cinema of Karel Zeman.

Karel Zeman (1910-89) was a Czech film director, artist, production designer and animator, best known for directing fantasy films combining live-action footage with animation. Because of his creative use of special effects and animation in his films, he has often been called the “Czech Méliès”. The films ti be shown at the Panorama have been digitally restored as part of Čistíme svět fantazie / Restoring the World of Fantasy, a joint project of the Karel Zeman Museum, the Czech Film Foundation and Czech Television.

In collaboration with the Consulate General of the Czech Republic in Los Angeles, the Velaslavasay Panorama hosts three screenings of Zeman’s films — a kind of mini-festival — exploring a deep sea voyage, the perils of prehistoric life, and the airborne adventures of Jules Vernes.

This is Octoberfest, Czech film style!

Invention for Destruction (Vynález zkázy) – 1958
Thursday October 5, 2023

Journey to the Beginning of Time (Cesta do pravěku) – 1955
Sunday October 8, 2023
followed by Czech Garden Celebration & Reception 3:30pm-6:00pm**

The Stolen Airship (Ukradená vzducholod’) – 1966
Thursday October 12, 2023

The Painted Cinema of Karel Zeman | Velaslavasay Panorama, in collaboration with the Czech Consulate of LA | October 5, 8, & 12

Leave a Reply