Czech master craftsman: “Whole world is seeing our work” in Glass Onion

Daniel Craig and Czech-made crystal sculptures, Glass Onion: A Knives Out Mystery.

One of the biggest movies in the world at present, Glass Onion: A Knives Out Mystery, has a Czech connection. The Netflix hit heavily features crystal sculptures made by a small company from North Bohemia.

Daniel Craig and Czech-made crystal sculptures,  Glass Onion: A Knives Out Mystery. | Photo: John Wilson / Netflix

The current number one film globally on Netflix is Glass Onion: A Knives Out Mystery.

Rian Johnson’s big budget movie stars such names as Daniel Craig and Kate Hudson – and a large number of Czech-made crystal sculptures.

They are the work of the company Pačinek Glass, which is based in Kunratice u Cvikova in North Bohemia.

Founder and master glass maker Jiří Pačinek says collaboration began when the film’s producers came across the name after entering “Czech glass” in a Google search.

It was a demanding commission, with 60 or so pieces – originals and copies – having to be completed in around a month.

Daniel Craig and Czech-made crystal sculptures,  Glass Onion: A Knives Out Mystery. | Photo: John Wilson / Netflix

“It was huge order, and very prestigious. Also for me as a glass maker it was a major challenge, because they were beautiful objects.

"And it’s not every day that you work for Hollywood.

"The film’s art director, John Dexter, designed the pieces and he came to our workshop and worked alongside us.”

Jiří Pačinek and his son Jiří | Photo: Lucie Fürstová,  Český rozhlas

John Dexter has been involved in a host of major projects, including Once Upon a Time in Hollywood and Pirates of the Caribbean movies.

Jiří Pačinek describes their collaboration.

“He came in person and brought with him lots of 1:1 pictures and various 3D images, from different sides, so that I would get a good understanding of everything.

"He pointed out details that really needed to be there and there was also a big focus on getting the size just right.”

Glass Onion: A Knives Out Mystery had its world premiere at the Toronto International Film Festival in September but reached a massive audience when it was released on Netflix just before Christmas.

There was particular excitement in Kunratice u Cvikova.

Jiří Pačinek | Photo: Czech Radio

“We had seen some photographs from the shoot, but we were sworn to secrecy and hadn’t shown them to anyone.

"But then when we saw the film itself the first day, on December 23, it was insane.

"I hadn’t understood just how much everything would be visible.

"It’s the main decoration at the end of the film, when it gets smashed up.

"It was amazing for me – the whole world is seeing our work.”

Jiří Pačinek | Photo: Tomáš Mařas,  Czech Radio

Mr. Pačinek says he was a little sorry to see his painstakingly crafted work being destroyed on screen but understood that it served the plot.

Meanwhile, he is philosophical on the question of whether big-time movie makers are likely to come calling again.

“We’re not naive and we don’t think that will happen soon, but there is a slight chance that we could get on the list of companies which make glass objects for Hollywood.

"But we are getting a lot of calls from the media, as well as from private collectors, so it is a bit of an ad for our firm.”

Pačinek Glass’s crystal sculptures can be seen in the trailer for the film.