Five Million Witnesses

detective

Typology

feature

Czech title

5 milionů svědků

Runtime

91

Country

Czechoslovakia

Copyright

1965

Production year

1965

Premiere

31.12.1965

Language version

Czech

Director

Eva Sadková

Summary

Eva Sadková primarily worked as a director of television productions, but her film resumé is not devoid of success. Asides from the comedy film Dvanáct (Twelve with an Idea, 1964), based on a theatrical play by Pavel Kohout, her feature-film resume includes this successful crime drama from 1965. In the story, a murder is committed during a live Czechoslovak television broadcast of the detective play Případ pro tři vrahy (A Case of Three Murderers). Five million people watch as popular acting veteran Faltys is slain. Somebody has connected the armchair, in which the weak-hearted actor is due to sit, to a lethal electric current. Two criminologists – the circumspect captain Suda and his hot-blooded young partner Koval – try to solve the case. In the style of an old-fashioned detective story, all of those present at the murder are invited to witness a reconstruction within the television studio. Miroslav Macháček portrays the on-screen author of the fictional murder play. The two sharp-witted criminologists are played by Radovan Lukavský and Jan Tříska.

Synopsis

During the TV premiere of the detective story by Petr Tarantík, Case for Three Murderers, a popular actor of an older generation, Faltys, dies in the midst of live broadcasting, in front of the eyes of millions of TV viewers, the whole crew and the rest of the cast. It is soon discovered that he was murdered - somebody intentionally connected the armchair in which the actor was seated to electricity and Faltys' weak heart failed. In the course of the investigation, Captain Suda introduces himself to the facts connected with the filming as well as with the relations between the people involved, paying special attention to those who had "reason" to kill Faltys. These are: the actor's wife; her lover, architect Balabán; actor Ajm who hated Faltys; and assistant director Číž who was fond of Faltys' ward Jindřiška. Suda with the help of his colleagues reconstructs the events of the preceding day, and upon analyzing the results, he arrives at the probable culprit. He then invites everybody involved to the final re-enactment in the TV studio, finding out that the only person who had the possibility to switch on the electricity during the broadcast was the playwriter himself, Petr Tarantík. Tarantík confesses to his crime under the weight of evidence. He, however, did not intend to kill Faltys; he only wanted to knock him out and thus raise the popularity of his show.

Cast

Radovan Lukavský

kapitán VB Suda

Jan Tříska

vyšetřovatel VB Koval

Miroslav Macháček

autor hry Petr Tarantík

Rudolf Hrušínský

architekt Balabán

Jiří Holý

herec Jiří Ajm

Jana Břežková

herečka Jindřiška /Jana/ Hlavová

Luděk Munzar

dramaturg Ivan Vorlíček

Irena Kačírková

Irena, Faltysova žena

Vít Olmer

asistent režie Zbyněk Číž

Karel Šebesta

hlavní kameraman Pangrác

Otomar Korbelář

režisér Glanc

Oldřich Velen

herec Pláteník

Vladimír Hrubý

osvětlovač Haukvic

Jan Libíček

náměstek dr. Strouhal

Josef Kábrt

Ing. Herold

Vladimír Čech

herec Jan Faltys

Václav Fišer

vrchní Kubernát

Gabriela Bártlová-Buddeusová

servírka v bufetu Máňa

Heda Škrdlantová

asistentka zvuku

Eva Sirotková

telefonistka

Jiřina Zemanová

telefonistka

Luděk Drábek

kameraman

Alexandr Rašilov

asistent kamery

Vladimír Navrátil

příslušník VB

Viktor Očásek

vrátný

Dagmar Dvořáčková

hlasatelka

František Štěpánek

taxikář Bažant

Dubbing

Felix le Breux

hlas Jana Faltyse

Mirko Musil

hlas střihače

Crew and creators

Director

Eva Sadková

Second Unit Director

Miroslav Kubišta

Assistant Director

Jiří Polák (2), Marta Kunstová

Screenstory

Václav Nývlt

Based on

Václav Nývlt (Dva miliony svědků – román)

Shooting Script

Eva Sadková

Second Unit Photography

Jaroslav Kupšík

Camera Operator

Antonín Vojáček

Production Designer

Karel Lier

Set Designer

Jiří Drégr, Dvořák Josef (výprava), Karel Průcha

Sound Designer

Ladislav Hausdorf

Production Manager

Eliška Nejedlá

Unit Production Manager

Jiří Zika, Vladislav Špidra

Consultant

mjr. Miloš Vlasák

Cooperation

Marie Koubková, Eva Lichtensteinová, Libuše Jahodová

Music

Music Performed by

skupina Mefisto

Songs

Kdo bude vrah

Songwriter

Jiří Štaidl (Kdo bude vrah)

Writer of Lyrics

Jiří Štaidl (Kdo bude vrah)

Singer

Pavlína Filipovská (Kdo bude vrah)

Production info

Original Title

5 milionů svědků

English Title

Five Million Witnesses

Working Title

Dva milióny svědků

Copyright

1965

Production Year

1965

Premiere

31.12.1965

Creative Group

Šmída – Fikar, Ladislav Fikar, Bohumil Šmída

Technical info

Versions

Czech