Febiofest - Prague International Film Festival

Peter Gašparík, co-screenwriter of “The Cleaner” #febiofest

Play Podcast
8 min. and 35 sec.

Loneliness and the impact of childhood traumas in a new unsettling Slovak drama.

Play Podcast
8 min. and 35 sec.

PODCAST: FRED’s Matt Micucci interviews Peter Gašparík, screenwriter of The Cleaner from the 2016 Febiofest Prague International Film Festival.

To listen to the interview, click on the ► icon on the right, just above the picture of the film

Loneliness and the effects of childhood trauma. These are the two driving elements in The Cleaner, a Slovak giallo that marks the second collaboration between director Peter Bebjak and screenwriter Peter Gašparík. The two wrote the screenplay together, and Gašparík talks about where the inspiration of the film came from. Deepening the effect of the study of the theme of loneliness, is the approach used for the feature, which makes use of very little dialogue. We ask him about the challenges of using this particular approach, and how important the casting was and what the actors brought to the table in terms of making things that might have appeared to be challenging to the final work.

THE CLEANER: Tomas works for a funeral service as a cleaner. He gets the keys to the apartments of the deceased and scrubs dirt and blood while relatives mourn. He enjoys hiding behind wardrobe doors or under beds, spying on the grieving guests who have no idea that the funeral service worker has stayed a bit longer. When the granddaughter of a dead woman visits the flat, Tomas in his hideout witnesses something not intended for the eyes of a stranger. After the romantic Apricot Island (2011) and horror Evil (2012), Slovak director Peter Bebjak switches genres once again, this time presenting an unsettling drama.


  • Reporter
    Matt Micucci
  • Guest
    Peter Gasparik
  • Interviewee role
  • Film title
    The Cleaner
  • Festival section
    Slovak Day
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