Bubliny nelžou - iPhone film from Aquarius Pictures on Vimeo.



That day started usually, as one of those normal working days. Ing. Cmiral woke up, washed his face and teeth in the bathroom – and suddenly, a strange thing happened. A bubble like from a comic book appeared above his head. Number 6 was inside the bubble. Very soon shown up the everybody in the world had a bubble, but no one knew the meaning of those different numbers. The film was shot entirely on an iPhone 5, was selected for more than 70 film festival around the world and won 14 awards till now.


Michal Simek: Ing. Cmiral
Lenka Drholcova: Cmiral’s wife
Katka Etrychova: 
TV  presenter
Ondrej Topinka: 
Man outside the house
Michal Topinka: Man outside the house
Vojtech Kratochvil
 Boy in the pram
Kamila Etrychova: Boy’s mother
Daniel Kratochvil: Boys’s father
Milan Spalek: Priest
Lukas Jindra: Man with Tarantino
Katerina Zitkova: Woman with Tarantino
Vaclav Jindrich: Wirdo/TV reporter/Storyteller
Tomas Fiala: Man at the escalator
Jakub Martinovsky: Man at the escalator
Josef Petrak: Man at the escalator
Milos Cermak: Cmíral’s colleague
Zdenka Etrychova: Upset mother
Jiri Etrych: Upset father
Alena Vondraskova: Disgusted daughter
Stepan Etrych: Playboy
Zuzana Krajickova: Nun
Sarka Novakova: Haris Pilton
Jan Suchan: Man with the big TV
Jan Mestan ml.: Man with the book
David Wendelin: Hooker
Tereza Kutova: Cmiral’s ex #1
Katerina Kotalova: Cmiral’s ex #2
Lena Vorackova: Cmiral’s ex #3
Kristina Hrbkova: Cmiral’s ex #4
Aneta Dousova: Cmiral’s ex #5

Directed by: Stepan Etrych
Produced by: Stepan Etrych
Original short story: Milos Cermak
Written by: Stepan Etrych
Screenplay colaboration: Katka Etrychova, Vaclav Jindrich, Michal Simek, Milan Spalek
Assistant director: Vaclav Jindrich
Cinematography by: Stepan Etrych
Edited by: Stepan Etrych
Animation: Stepan Etrych
Sound recording: Vaclav Jindrich, Milan Spalek, Stepan Etrych
Boom pole operators: Vaclav JindrichMilan Spalek
Lighting: Vaclav JindrichMilan SpalekStepan Etrych
Make-up artists: Katka Etrychova, David Wendelin
Costumes: David Wendelin
Music by: Stepan Etrych, Soundroll, KR_Music, e1rock
Clapperboard: Katka Etrychova
Logistics: Michal Simek, Stepan Etrych

Special thanks:
P. Mgr. Zacharias Tomas Kristek, O.Praem. – Sv. Ludmila church, Prague
Stanislav Bosko – restaurant Port Stanley
Jan Petrak, Frantisek Butkaj, Erik Vesely – Fibix Studio
Josef Petrak

Tech specs
Runtime: 4:58 min
Aspect ration: 1,78:1
Resolution: 1080p/24fps
Camera: iPhone 5
Lenses: iPhone 5, Phocus lenses (wide a macro)
Festivals & Awards
* Toronto Smartphone Film Festival / Toronto, Canada – AUDIENCE AWARD
* Cinephone Int. Film Festival / Barcelona, Spain – BEST SCREENPLAY, BEST ACTING
* VideoCulture Fest / Prague, Czech Republic – BEST FILM
* Febiofest / Prague, Czech Republic
* A Night of Short Films / Philadelphia, USA
* What The Festival Art and Music Festival / Portland, USA
* Kinofest Šaľa / Šaľa, Slovakia
* LET´S CEE Film Festival / Vienna, Austria
* Naoussa Int. Film Festival / Naoussa, Greece
* Visionaria Int. Film Festival / Siena, Italy
* La Mida No Importa Int. Film Festival / Barcelona, Spain
* Cinema Open / Hradec Králové, Czech Republic
* mObgraphia Film Festival / Sao Paulo, Brazil
* El Dia Més Curt / Barcelona, Spain

* Int. Mobile Film Festival / San Diego, USA – BEST FILM
Big D Mobile Phone Fest / Dallas, USA – BEST FILM
* SmartFone Flick Fest / Sydney, Austrálie – BEST DIRECTING, BEST SCREENPLAY
* Festival Klapka / Kladno, Czech Republic – BEST INDIE FILM
* Mobile Film Festival / Skopje, Macedonia – BEST IDEA AWARD
* Drunken Film Festival / Bradford, UK – HONOURABLE MENTION
* Kleinkaap Short Film Festival – Pretoria, South Africa – NOMINATED: BEST FOREIGN FILM
* Goldensun Short Film Festival / Zebburg, Malta
* Original iPhone Film Festival / New York, USA
* Festival Int. de Cine de Lebu / Lebu, Chile
* Versi di Luce / Modica, Italy
* Cortisonici Int. Short Film Festival / Varese, Italy
* Kiné Exhibition / Puebla, Mexico
* Buzz CEE – Buzau Int. Film Festival / Buzau, Romania
* XVI Festival Cine a la Calle / Barranquilla, Columbia
* Backup Film Festival / Weimar, Germany
* Ozark Shorts / Lamar, USA
* XPO North / Inverness, Skotsko
* CreaActive Int. Open Film Festival / Dhaka, Bangladesh
* Tlanchana Fest / Zinacantepec, Mexico
* Toyama Int. Film Festival / Toyama, Japan
* Ekurhuleni Int. Film Festival / Johannesburg, South Africa
* Tangerine Dreams: Filmic Pro Film Contest / online, USA
* B-Retina Film Festival / Barcelona, Spain
* Festival de cotrometrajes Korterraza / Vitoria, Spain
* Festival de curtmetrages „Agustí Comes“ / Vinarós, Spain
* MoliseCinema Festival / Casacalenda, Italy
* Ciclo de Cine El Páramo / Paracho, Mexico
* Genius Loci Film Festival / Weimar, Germany
* Slum Film Fest / Nairobi, Kenya
* Figueira FilmArt / Figueira, Portugal
* Sedicicorto International Film Festival / Forli, Italy
* IndiCrete Film Festival / Kréta, Greece
* 2nd Minikino Film Week / Bali, Indonesia
* Bienal VideoFest 2K16 / Mexicali, Mexico
* Chicago Independent Film Festival / Chicago, USA
* Mira Lincoln Short Film Festival / Lincoln, Argentina
* Festival Černá věž / České Budějovice, Czech Republic
* Festival Int. de Cine con Medios Alt. FICMA / Mexico City, Mexico
* MINA Int. Mobile Innovation Screening / Wellington, New Zealand
* Equality Festival / Kiev, Ukraine
* Super 9 Mobile Film Festival / Porto, Portugal
* [C] Screen / Cerdanyola, Spain
* Popoli e Religioni – Terni Film Festival / Terni, Italy

* SmartPhilm Fest / Washington DC, USA – BEST FILM: Grand Jury „Hall of Phame“ prize
* iPhone Film Festival / Beverly Hills, USA – BEST FILM: 2nd RUNNER-UP
* Velcom Smarfilm / Minsk, Belarus
* Festival de cortometrajes „Jose Francisco Rosado“ PACAS / Pedro Munoz, Spain
* PAFF Festival / Pezinok, Slovakia
* SmartFest.co/ Lisboa, Portugal
* Congress of the Peoples Assembly of Eurasia / Moscow, Russia
* Novella Showcase / Jackson, USA
* Mesto lidem, lide mestu / Ceske Budejovice, Czech Republic
* Curtas do Acaso / Lisbon, Portugal
* Festival Kratasy / Pelhrimov, Czech Republic
* African Smartphone International Film Festival / Lagos, Nigeria
* AFC Global Fest / Kolkata, India

* Ozveny Kratasu / Pocatky, Czech Republic
* International Film Festival „Cinema and You“ / Mariupol, Ukraine
* El Paso IMPACTFest Film Festival / El Paso, USA


The story of Bubbles Don’t Lie began with a book by Czech journalist and writer Milos Cermak. When the director Stepan Etrych was looking for an idea for his next smartphone film at the end of 2014, he realized Cermak’s short stories are simply perfect to be filmed. Great storytelling with humour and unexpected punchlines. That was what he needed. Cermak agreed in one second so the production could begin.

For his new film, Etrych picked the Bubbles Don’t Lie short story. It was very challenging to make a film from this the written story, because all the characters are wearing comic bubbles above their heads. Etrych shot many test shots to see the animation of the bubbles will look good. As the camera, iPhone 5 was chosen for its great HD image and possibility to use filmmaking app FilmicPro which was available for iPhones only at that time.

Anyway, not only the animation skills were needed. The filmmakers also had to rewrite the story to work as a movie. The main storyline was kept – Mr. Cmiral and his wife as main characters – but it was necessary to create many new characters to fill the story with. That written story works mostly with the imagination of the reader, but the camera must show all the characters in very exact way. Before the production itself began, the screenplay was rewritten four times.

The shooting took some 10 days, the whole thing was shot in Prague, Czech Republic. It was really an indie filmmaking. Thanks to kindness of many people, the filmmakers with low-budget – almost no-budget – could get to some very nice places, like shooting
the priest scene inside the Church of Saint Ludmila of Bohemia in the centre of Prague.

But in another places, the filmmakers could not get the official permission for shotting, so it became a real guerilla-filmmaking. The opening shot of the scene with the nun going outside the cathedral door was shot at the first go – on the second take the guards broke the filmmaking saying „Without a permission, you can shoot outside only.“ Fortunately, the first shot was great!

About 30 characters appeared in the movie, it was shot in about 20 different locations – also a greenscreen shot was used for the television studio shots. The greenscreen background was purchased on eBay for some 60 USD – and was placed in the director‘s living room for two days. In general, all the shots taken during the production were about 3 hours of rough material, doubling the 32 GB iPhone storage capacity.

With all the shots done, a postproduction started and it took almost a month – the most time was consumed by the animation of the bubbles. The rough cut was 6 minutes, but director wanted the film to be even more fast paced, so some scenes and characters were eliminated. But no one of the key supporting characters, which was also quite a challenge.

Once the final cut was made, with the soundtrack done, the animation part took place. It was needed to add a bubble above every head that appeared in the movie, even those tiny characters far away from the camera. Some shots consumed a lot of time – for example the ice-hockey scene appears for only 2 seconds in the movie, but it took 24 hours of work to look great.

So, after a two-month hard work a 5-minutes short was finished. Its world premiere took place at the Prague Internatinal Film Festival Febiofest, March 21, 2015.


Turn on English subtitles clicking the (CC) icon in the Vimeo player: