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The Woman Across the Way: Filming in Berlin


Work with Vojtech Jasny
Walter Lassally Film-maker
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Unfortunately I only made two feature films with Vojtech. Then our ways parted again, except for the following year we made quite an interesting documentary about the painter, Ernst Fuchs which brought us back to Vienna again. But apart from that, I never, unfortunately, had the chance to work with Vojtech again. But I did tell... In the course of all this work, I saw this film that he made in Czechoslovakia which was banned for all those years, and that... it's such a lovely film. It's about the story of a small village in Bohemia, between 1945 and about the time of the Russian invasion, not quite up to that point. And you get to know the characters in that village. One by one everybody becomes a friend. It's so intimately made, that at the end of the film, you feel you've known those people all your life. And I said to Vojtech, very sincerely, I said, 'If I'd made just one film like that, I feel I could die happy'.

Born in Germany, cinematographer Walter Lassally (1926-2017) was best known for his Oscar-winning work on 'Zorba the Greek'. He was greatly respected in the film industry for his ability to take the best of his work in one area and apply it to another, from mainstream to international art films to documentary. He was associated with the Free Cinema movement in the 1950s, and the British New Wave in the early 1960s. In 1987 he published his autobiography called 'Itinerant Cameraman'.

Listeners: Peter Bowen

Peter Bowen is a Canadian who came to Europe to study and never got round to heading back home. He did his undergraduate work at Carleton University (in Biology) in Ottawa, and then did graduate work at the University of Western Ontario (in Zoology). After completing his doctorate at Oxford (in the Department of Zoology), followed with a year of postdoc at the University of London, he moved to the University's newly-established Audio-Visual Centre (under the direction of Michael Clarke) where he spent four years in production (of primarily science programs) and began to teach film. In 1974 Bowden became Director of the new Audio-Visual Centre at the University of Warwick, which was then in the process of introducing film studies into the curriculum and where his interest in the academic study of film was promoted and encouraged by scholars such as Victor Perkins, Robin Wood, and Richard Dyer. In 1983, his partner and he moved to Greece, and the following year he began to teach for the University of Maryland (European Division), for which he has taught (and continues to teach) biology and film courses in Crete, Bosnia, and the Middle East.

Tags: Vojtech Jasny, Ernst Fuchs

Duration: 1 minute, 3 seconds

Date story recorded: June 2004

Date story went live: 24 January 2008