The great Czech-born cinematographer Miroslav Ondricek, whose career began with ’60s Czech New Wave films including Milos Forman‘s The Firemen’s Ball and The Loves of a Blonde and who later shot Forman’s Taking Off, Hair, Ragtime and Amadeus, has died at age 80. Ondricek also shot Lindsay Anderson‘s If… and O Lucky Man!, Mike Nichols‘ Silkwood and George Roy Hill‘s Slaughterhouse-Five (i.e., “Schlachthaus-fünf”). He also dp’ed Penny Marshall‘s A League of Their Own. Salutes, sadness, condolences. One of the great ones. Ondricek’s work on Ragtime and Amadeus was Oscar-nominated for Best Cinematography but he didn’t win. I’ll take it very badly of the Academy if they don’t include this legendary artist in next year’s death reel.

Celebrated cinematographer Miroslav Ondricek

On a semi-related note I learned yesterday that another Czech film devotee, Karlovy Vary Film Festival publicist Tereza Perinova, has passed after a bout with cancer. This was especially shocking to me as I met with Tereza at last year’s Cannes Film Festival to try and convince her that I was a sufficiently important journalist for the KVFF to cover my round-trip plane fare. (Critic Marshall Fine and Deadline‘s Pete Hammond had recently been offered air passage + hotel room; KVFF organizers offered me only the latter.) Tereza was very gracious and considerate when she turned me down. She seemed fairly young (she was 35 when she passed) and had two kids, ages 4 and 6. A publicist friend who worked with Perinova said “she was bravely fighting cancer and even continuing working, but this sudden departure was absolutely shocking…really devastating for the whole family.”

For the 50th Karlovy Vary Film Festival (7.3 to 7.11), Perinova’s international media position will be handled by Katka Nguyen, who was Tereza’s co-worker for many years.