As an apprentice, Forman worked on a host of different projects before he “made it” as a film director. He worked with famous Czech director Martin Frič on a screenplay called Leave It Up to Me, which garnered him one of the biggest paychecks at that time. By twenty-three, he helped develop screenplays for Alfréd Radok on films including Distant Journey, and served as the second directorial assistant on Radok’s film Grandpa Automobile. Radok handed over the reigns of director to Forman for the first time during a scene in the movie, and Forman fell in love with directing. He later worked with Radok on Laterna Magika (Magic Lantern), a new media show incorporating dance, theater, and film, which enabled him to travel abroad to the 1958 Brussels Exposition. Laterna Magika received the gold medal at the Expo and even Walt Disney stopped by the pavilion to tell them he admired their work. While in Brussels, Forman spent most of his time at the American Pavilion completely taken by jazz legend Ella Fitzgerald, Jerry Robbins’ choreography, and American singer Harry Belafonte.
Photo courtesy of Jaromír Komárek