Born Mar. 29, 1902, in Prague; died there July 26, 1968. Czechoslovak film director. People’s Artist of the Czechoslovak Socialist Republic (ČSSR, 1965).
Frič, who studied at the School of Industrial Arts, began acting in the theater at the age of 16. He studied camera art and worked as a scriptwriter and film actor. He became well known after making the motion pictures Pater Vojtech (1928) and The Organist of St. Vitus’ Cathedral (1929). Especially popular were Frič’s satirical comedies featuring the comedians J. Werich and J. Voskovec, Workers, Let’s Go! (1934) and The World Belongs to Us (1937), and his screen version of a Slovak folk legend, Janošik (l936).
Frič made the first postwar Slovak feature film, Look Out! (1947), which was followed by The Tempered Ones (1950; prize winner at the Fifth International Film Festival in Karlovy Vary), which dealt with the revolutionary impulse behind the Czech working-class movement during the crisis of the early 1930’s. Other motion pictures directed by Frič include The Inspector-General (1933; based on the play by N. Gogol), the slapstick comedy Eva Plays the Fool (1939), The Emperor’s Baker (1951), Blood Secret (1953), The White Buckle (1960), and People From the Wagons (1966).
Frič served as first secretary of the Union of Motion Picture Workers of the ČSSR from 1965 to 1968. He was awarded the State Prize of the ČSSR in 1950 and 1951.