Czech films presented as part of 2005 World Expo

The 2005 World Expo in the Japanese prefecture of Aichi is slowly drawing to a close. As part of the huge international show, visitors have been able to enjoy the Czech contribution entitled "The Garden of Fantasy and Music".

It is based on the interaction of sound, light, colour and movement, and encourages visitors to play around with all the different objects on display, touch them and create visual as well as sound effects.

But that's not all. Among the additional programmes were also a Week of Czech Music and a Week of Czech Film which has just ended in the Japanese capital of Tokyo. Martina Honcikova is the PR manager for the Czech delegation.

"As part of the Czech presentation at the Expo 2005 we prepared a very unique and historically first ever presentation of Czech film which took place in Tokyo. The audience had the opportunity to see 25 films, from the 1960s to current works. I have to say the presentation was very successful and although it was shown in a club cinema, we can say that the performances were sold out for each of the films. Just to give you an idea as to what kind of films were shown: we had films by, for instance, Jan Hrebejk, such as 'Divided We Fall' or 'Cozy Dens' or his latest film 'Up and Down'. There were also films with musical themes, such as 'Lion with a White Mane' or 'A Concert at the End of Summer'. Of course, we must not forget the icon of Czech cinema, Milos Forman, who was presented by 'The Firemen's Ball' and 'Loves of a Blonde'."

You mentioned that the presentation was very successful. Now what exactly was the response among the Japanese public?

"Well, the response was excellent. Of course, the Japanese public know certain filmmakers but what we wanted to do was sort of expand their horizons and offer them some of our new cinema. So that's why we came not only with the traditional films but also with the latest production. So I think it was a success, really."

Now to the Czech presentation at the Expo in general; if you look back at the six months or so, has it been a success, do you think?

"Well, with only three weeks to go, I think I can now say it has been a tremendous success for the Czech Republic at the Expo in Japan. Just to give you an idea: before the Expo started we counted with about 8,000 visitors per day in our pavilion and the reality is now we have from 11,000 to 13,000 people in the pavilion. I think that really shows that the Japanese but also foreign visitors to the Expo really love the Czech pavilion and I think that the idea of the exhibition 'Garden of Fantasy and Music' was the right one."

Finally, what is going to happen to the pavilion now that the Expo is about to end?

"Well, the organisers want all the pavilions to be disassembled. So basically, at the very beginning of the Expo each country was given a certain number of 'modules' which we then had to fill with the expositions. So now at the end of the Expo we have to remove the expositions and return the modules to the organisers in their original state. So we will have to dismantle the exposition and that's basically it. Now we are working already on the plans for the finishing of the Expo."

So there are no plans like bringing the pavilion back home and installing it somewhere in the Czech Republic?

"We cannot bring back the pavilion, because the pavilion is basically a module. What we did was the façade and the interior. As far as bringing the interior back to the Czech Republic we are now looking into the options. However it's now just a plan, so we will see what will happen."

Martina Honcikova, the PR manager for the Czech exposition at The World Expo in Aichi.