News Festival Daily's interview: Jiří Mádl
Published: July 06, 2019| 08:00 AM
Director and actor Jiří Mádl is screening his second directorial feature, On the Roof, at KVIFF, an international story with origins in New York City.
The story of a grumpy, lonely former communist and a young Vietnamese boy on the run in Prague, On the Roof, is a compelling, tender and subtle drama about friendship and loss. After writing his first feature To See the Sea (2014) Mádl decided he needed more control over his own creative process.
“It came out of nowhere into my head,” he says. “But I knew that I badly needed some insight, some structure. And that’s why I decided to go to the New York Film Academy.” Mádl spent over six months in intensive screenwriting study. The result of that New York writing experience is his latest film.
Naturally, the work went through multiple drafts, though in this case it went through some very specific changes, including being adapted for a German version. “There was a plan to make it as a German film, for which I had Bruno Ganz cast,” Mádl says. “And he had already signed the memo and was really into it but I’m not a big enough name to get international financing so we saw that that was a dead-end street. So, we simply decided to bring it back to the Czech Republic.”