One of Trnka’s full-length pictures, it is based upon Hans Christian Andersen’s fairy-tale. It is a story of a Chinese emperor that, because of a beautiful toy-nightingale, forgets about the song of a real, live nightingale that comforted him in his solitude. Trnka unconditionally backs the live art’s side. The picture has strong ethical components, and it has been admired by many. It is also famous for the extraordinary music composed by Vaclav Trojan. —kratkyfilm.cz
Jiří Trnka (24 February 1912, Plzeň – 30 December 1969, Prague) was a Czech puppet maker, illustrator, motion-picture animator and film director, renowned for his stop motion puppet animations.
He graduated from the Prague School of Arts and Crafts. He created a puppet theater in 1936. This group was dissolved when World War II began, and he instead designed stage sets and illustrated books for children throughout the war.
After the end of the war, Trnka established an animation unit at the Prague film studio. Trnka soon became internationally recognized as the world’s greatest puppet animator in the traditional Czech method, and he won several film festival awards. One animator called him “the Walt Disney of the East”.
He won an award at the Cannes Festival in 1946, just one year after he began working in film. His films were mostly made for an adult audience. Beginning in 1948, the communist Czech government began to subsidize his creations, although this did… read more