Petr Zelenka (director)

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Petr Zelenka (2018)

Petr Zelenka (born 21 August 1967 in Prague, Czechoslovakia) is a Czech playwright and director of theatre and film. His films have been recognized at international festivals in Moscow and Rotterdam. In 2008, his film Karamazovi was the Czech Republic's official Oscar submission for Best Foreign Language Film.


An early notable work is a black comedy, Tales of Common Insanity (2004) (Czech: Příběhy obyčejného šílenství), which he directed at Dejvické divadlo. He received the Alfréd Radok Award for Best Play. The play was later staged in other Czech theatres as well as in Poland, Hungary, Slovakia, Slovenia and Germany. It was also published in English and translated to Russian. For his film Mnâga – Happy End he won the 1996 Findling Award at the Filmfestival Cottbus.

In 2005 Zelenka adapted the comedy as a film, released as Wrong Side Up, which won two movie festival awards in 2006 and was nominated for six other awards. His second most notable play is Teremin, inspired by the life of Russian inventor Léon Theremin.

His 2008 film, Karamazovi, was the Czech Republic's official Oscar submission for Best Foreign Language Film.

His 2010 election advertisement "Přemluv bábu a dědu" caused controversy as critics believed it was offensive against elder people[1] and "an imperfect copy of Sarah Silverman's stand-up video."[2]


Year Title Role Notes
1993 Visací zámek 1982 - 2007 screenplay and direction Television film
1996 Mňága – Happy End screenplay and direction won several awards at the film festivals in Cottbus (Findling Award), Plzeň and České Budějovice[3]
1997 Buttoners Screenplay and direction Winner of a Tiger award at the Rotterdam IFF
2000 Erotic Tales: Powers Screenplay and direction
2000 Loners Co-author of screenplay
2002 Year of the Devil Screenplay and direction FIPRESCI Prize at the Cottbus IFF, six Czech Lion Awards including Best film and Best director, Prize Trieste at Trieste film festival
2005 Wrong Side Up Screenplay and direction Received the Critics Award at the 27th Moscow International Film Festival[4] and the Don Quixote Award at Cottbus
2008 Karamazovi Screenplay and direction
2015 Lost in Munich Screenplay and direction
2020 Droneman Screenplay and direction


  1. ^ "Mádl s Issovou v klipu nabádají: Přemluv bábu a dědu, ať nevolí levici!", CT24
  2. ^ "Bez humoru ani bábu nepřemluvíš. Spot Přemluv bábu je nedokonalou kopií videa stand-up komičky Sarah Silvermanové" Archived 2012-07-10 at, Marketing a Média
  3. ^ "Czech Centre London: Mnaga and Zdorp". Archived from the original on 2005-03-10. Retrieved 2005-03-10.
  4. ^ "27th Moscow International Film Festival (2005)". MIFF. Archived from the original on 2013-04-03. Retrieved 2013-04-14.

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