The film was written by Ladislav Grosman and directed by Ján Kadár and Elmar Klos. It was funded by Czechoslovakia's central authorities (as were all films under communism), produced at the Barrandov Film Studio in Prague, the Czech Republic, and filmed with a Slovak cast on location at the town of Sabinov in north-eastern Slovakia and on the Barrandov sound stage. It stars Jozef Kroner as carpenter Tono Brtko and Polish actress Ida Kamińska as the Jewish widow Rozália Lautmannová.
The screenplay had a bilingual Czech−Slovak history. The screenwriter Ladislav Grosman (1921-1981) was born and grew up in Slovakia. He became proficient in Czech after he moved to Czechoslovakia's Czech-speaking part in his late twenties, where he worked as a correspondent and editor in the Prague Bureau of the Slovak newspaper Pravda published in Bratislava, and later in the Slovak Book bookstore in Prague. Grosman published his precursor to the screenplay, the short story "The Trap" (Past), in Czech in 1962. Only three of its themes made it into the film. He subsequently reworked and expanded it, still in Czech, as a literary-narrative screenplay published in 1964 under the title "The Shop on Main Street" (Obchod na korze), which already contained the film's storyline, although not in the usual (American) screenplay format. He then reworked it into a shooting script with Slovak dialogues in cooperation with the film's designated directors Ján Kadár and Elmar Klos. The only other language in the film is Yiddish (sometimes misidentified as German) limited to several lines that Mrs. Lautmannová mutters to herself. Her Hebrew reading from the siddur is indistinct.
|Jozef Kroner (1924-1998)||Anton "Tono" Brtko, carpenter|
|Ida Kamińska (1899-1980)||Rozália Lautmannová, button-store owner|
|Hana Slivková (1923-1984)||Evelína Brtková, Tono's wife|
|Martin Hollý Sr. (1904-1965)||Imrich Kuchár, accountant and resistance member|
|František Zvarík (1921-2008)||Markuš Kolkotský, town commander|
|Elena Pappová-Zvaríková (1935-1974)||Ružena "Róžika" Kolkotská, his wife and Evelína's sister|
|Adam Matejka (1905-1988)||Piti-báči (Uncle Piti), town crier|
|Martin Gregor (1906-1982)||Mr. Katz, barber|
|František Papp (1930-1983)||Mr. Andorič, railroad employee and Rozália's neighbor|
|Gita Mišurová (b. 1929)||Mrs. Andoričová, his wife|
|Eugen Senaj (1901-1981)||Mr. Blau, publisher and Jewish community treasurer|
|Lujza Grossová (1917-1981)||Mrs. Eliášová, Rozália's neighbor|
|J. Mittelmann||Daniel "Danko" Eliáš, her son|
|Mikuláš Ladžinský (1923-1987)||Marian Peter, paramilitary guard officer|
|Alojz Kramár (1916-1985)||Balko-báči (Uncle Balko), brass-band conductor|
|Tibor Vadaš (1908-1987)||Tobacconist|
The Shop on Main Street was filmed on location at the town of Sabinov in north-eastern Slovakia with numerous local extras whose voices bring in hints of the eastern regional variety of Slovak. Ida Kamińska's Polish accent is employed to the same effect.
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