Pavel Liska • Actor
Shooting Star 2006 - Czech Republic
by Sakis Kontos
Pavel Liska is one of the up and coming stars of the Czech film industry. His latest role in Bohdan Slama’s Something Like Happiness [+see also:
interview: Bohdan Slama
interview: Pavel Strnad
film profile] (Stesti), the Golden Shell winner at San Sebastian 2005, has brought Liska under the international spotlight.
Cineuropa: Considering the success that the film had in the festival season around the world but also at the home box office, would you say that your role in Bohdan Slama’s film Something Like Happiness (Stesti) is a key point in your career?
Pavel Liska: Well, I don’t [think it is]. I mean I don’t consider it to be a focal point of my career not because it is not, but simply because I never think in that way. The only thing for which I am really grateful and perceive as a god-given gift is that [this film] gave me the opportunity to get to know Bohdan Slama. Not only we did we become friends but also he introduced me to a new way of working, which I realized is very close to me. I mean the cinematic style but also the reasoning behind making somebody decide to film a story…
So, which role or rather which themes do you prefer and why?
Again, this is something that I don’t want to think about in detail. I must admit that so far I was very lucky with the roles offered. I never had to try to find an interesting aspect in one of my roles, as most of them had actually been interesting in their entirety. This kind of "luck" has made me more relaxed about my work; nowadays I am just happy waiting to be surprised by the next role that turns up…
The dailies reported that you have been busy lately but not with a film project but rather with a crash course in English. Was that because you felt that Something Like Happiness (Stesti) was an Academy Award contender or are you simply preparing for a European career? Are you actually ready for this kind of “happiness”?
I am and I would accept it. But neither reason was behind my decision to start learning English. You see I am one of the last [high school] students that left school when Russian was still the only foreign language taught. Later, in my JAMU (The Janacek Academy of Music and Performing Arts in Brno) days we did have English language courses, but I was too busy with other things, and a bit too lazy to pay attention. Only after I graduated did I realize how important it is in today’s film environment to be able to communicate – to understand and make yourself understood. Unfortunately I am still the same lazy bones as before, but I have found a good reason to force myself to learn this time round: my trip to Berlin for the Shooting Stars!
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