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Director Vera Chytilova died at age 85 in Prague due to an unspecified illness.
Chytilova was called the “first lady of Czech cinema.” She was a major force in the New Wave movement of the 1960s and her films were a departure from social realism.
Her film, Daisies, makes a strong statement about the Communist government of Czechoslovakia, according to The New York Times. Daisies won the Grand Prix at the Bergamo Film Festival in Italy in 1967. The feminist drama was originally released in 1966.
Chytilova’s career spanned four decades. Her features included Fruit of Paradise, Calamity, Panelstory, The Very Late Afternoon of the Faun and The Inheritance. Banned for many years, her fans still appreciated her work again during the Velvet Revolution in 1989. She continued speaking out. She said she was never ready to stay silent "when I face anything wrong. I don't think it is right just to take care of myself,” according to the Associated Press.
She is survived by a daughter, Tereza and a son, Stepan.