News in brief
23 September 2014 à 15:55
UniFrance sends short films around the world (September 2014)
As is our monthly custom, we share the experience of several of our members who have been able to attend films festivals abroad to present their short films, thanks to the support of Unifrance
"This is the second short film I've directed, each time produced by Isabelle Madelaine of Dharamsala. In it, I've attempted to depict the confrontation between two types of femininity, and the way in which women today deal with the desire (at times violent) they provoke and the desire which they believe they no longer provoke. My first impulse was to film Céline Sallette and Fanny Touron, the film's two protagonists, and to together confront the conflicting aspects of their respective energies.
The film was presented at the Venice International Film Festival and it is rather surreal to participate in an event of this kind. It's a huge festival in one of the greatest cities of the history of cinema. I don't really know what to say. It was great to be able to show our work there. Added to which, I have an Italian background, and now that Italian subtitles exist, I'm thrilled to be able to show my family the film.
Obviously, you always have expectations, and the desire that people beyond your own cultural borders can relate to the object that you create. Short films' lives are created only in these festivals, hence there is always the hope that a film gets a 'boarding pass' for further journeys. For the moment, in terms of international festivals, after Venice, the film will be in Competition at the FIFF in Belgium, and at the Chelsea Film Festival. It's fantastic to think that it will be at both these events at virtually the same time. Then we'll see what happens after that... I try to take advantage of each opportunity to show the film, without anticipating what will follow next. This was the kind of approach I already took with my first film, which begain its career at the La Semaine de la Critique - Cannes."
"Skin, which is my ninth short, tells the tale of an encounter, in the deserted corridors of the Parisian metro, at closing time, between a young woman and a tramp, who slowly discover that they are not quite as unfamiliar with each other as we could have believed.
Films are made to be seen, and festivals are obviously a special place for presenting one's work. They are allow you to be confronted by audiences, but also to share your experiences with other directors, actors, and producers; these exchanges even sometimes give rise to joint projects at latter dates. This is what happened at a festival where I met Charles Paviot, whose company Arts Premiers produced my two latest short films, and with whom I'm currently working on my debut feature.
These encounters with industry colleagues and spectators are often a particularly powerful moment when the festivals are abroad, because they bring together participants who've come from around the world. Realizing that, despite cultural and language differences, we can find ourselves linked by a shared passion is a feeling that is extremely comforting to me, particularly at a time when the flourishing of virtual relations accentuates the trend of withdrawing into ourselves.
I've often been able to witness, during these events which only last a few days at most, the birth of very strong connections, indeed long-lasting friendships, between the teams of different films produced by very different nations.
The Odense Film Festival, in Denmark, didn't stray from this rule: the legendary warmth of the people of this cold country contributed to making this celebration of short film a highly delightful moment, due as much to the quality of the welcome as to the program, spectators' fervor (most sessions were sold out), and the enthusiasm of the directors, producers, and actors who came to attend.
I continue to rejoice that the 'interior journey' that writing a film represents continues to offer me the possibility, with the complicity of Unifrance, of undertaking these journeys in all senses of the word, and to thus broaden my gaze on humanity.
Because, after all, isn't the aim of cinema, and more generally of art, to open up to the world?"
"Lil’ Sister is a short film that I made as my graduation piece for La fémis. It is a film somewhere between documentary and fiction, with non-professional actors, based on work carried out over six months in a video workshop with a group of children and their parents from Stains, on the outskirts of Paris.
Being selected for the Mostra - São Paulo International Film Festival was great news; the film was also presented at the Cine Migratorio Film Festival in Santander in Spain. It is yet to be shown in France; I hope that more selections in France and abroad lie ahead.
I wasn't able to attend the Mostra - São Paulo International Film Festival - 2014 for very long, 4 days in all, but the welcome by the festival team was extremely warm and pleasant. Speaking of which, I'd especially like to thank Anne Fryszman for her attentiveness and kindness. The film selection was very diverse and of high quality and, to their great credit, the few programs that I was able to see presented films very different from each other. I hope to be able to return to this festival, with or without a film in its selection! I thank Unifrance for having given me this opportunity to travel to the event."
"The presentation of Forest at the Montreal World Film Festival was a moment of intense and happy sharing. I was able to gather first impressions, see the film exist thanks to the spectators' reactions, and above all discover the worlds of other very different and powerful creators.
This festival thus allowed for wonderful encounters, between women and men sharing the same desire for film, some of whom will no doubt be a source for future joint projects.
The fact that festivalgoers take two weeks off work to appreciate a rich and varied program, and that, despite the lack of sunshine, sessions were often sold out, testifies to the commitment of a passionate and warm public. This first for me in Montreal marks the beginning of Forest's festival career, which continues on this fine trajectory and will be presented at other festivals at the end of the year."
Aïssa deals with the medical examinations carried out on undocumented immigrants in order to establish their age. The film was produced by Karine Blanc, Michel Tavares, and Pauline Seigland from Takami Productions. The film began its career this year at Cannes in Official Competition (Jury Special Mention). It's premier in North America was at the Telluride International Film Festival.
Forty international short films were presented at the TIFF (Toronto International Film Festival) - 2014. Aïssa was presented with 5 other films (including one French animated short, 8 Bullets by Frank Ternier). The film was very well received by the many spectators at TIFF during 3 screenings. The Q&A sessions following the screenings allowed for some interesting exchanges with spectators, and the festival was also the venue for some terrific encounters with directors and actors from around the world.
Toronto was the film's Canadian premier. Aïssa will be in Competition at the upcoming Hamptons International Film Festival. These selections in the USA are of course very positive and augur well for a fine career for the film.
Latest update : 30 September 2014 à 15:55 CEST