AN INTERVIEW WITH PAYAL KAPADIA ABOUT „AND WHAT IS THE SUMMER SAYING“

Let us introduce you to the indian director Payal Kapadia, who is participating in this year’s Berlinale Shorts competition.

Born in Mumbai, India in 1986, she is a filmmaker who initially studied economics and worked in advertising before, in 2012, taking up a degree in film directing at the Film and Television Institute of India (FTII) in Pune. Payals short films have already screened at various festivals including the Cinéfondation at the 2017 Festival de Cannes. With her shortfilm „And What Is the Summer Saying„, the director is represented for the first time at Berlinale Shorts.

The film tells the story of an indian village: The summer has its own songs. Whispering softly, they make their way to us from the depths of the jungle. Once a tiger prowled the village. The father doesn’t tell his son about this, as he holds him tight. In calm takes that concede the jungle its beauty, stature and deep serenity, the images move between the immediate and the totality, between the all-too-human and the awareness of the gods who will protect the village. The stories that the villagers tell the director follow a similar order in their sequencing. One leads to the next by association, thus opening up a village cosmos in which the old coexists with the new. Suddenly they appear, the forest creatures – only to vanish the next moment. A strange smoke exudes from the ground, like a dream from a bygone era. ‘People only sing, when they are in love with someone,’ the woman whispers – the day is done. For a brief moment the film is bathed once again in colour.

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Still from „And What Is the Summer Saying“

What is your ambition in the film?

I am interested in that which is not easily seen or cannot be spoken about in the open. Secret desires, anxieties, and unspoken love are difficult for women to openly talk about in India. But if you sit quietly, waiting for the wind in the courtyard of the village, you might hear a whisper of a long lost love. I spent many days in this village, waiting for the wind to bring with it some strands of stories like leaves that fall in the forest floor.

What do you like about the short form?

What is exciting about the short film format is that it’s closest to poetry. Like a haiku, or a short poem, that has seemingly unrelated lines – where the whole is greater than the sum of its parts. It doesn’t need to be explained. You look it at it, as it is. No need to ask: ‚And then?‘

What are your future plans?

The short format really excites me as it is so flexible and open. I am looking forward to try out the possibilities in feature films but also expanding to a cinematic experience which is not limited to the cinema.

Payal Kapadia 2 (2)
Payal Kapadia

„And What Is the Summer Saying“ will be screened several times during the Festival. Check the Dates here!

AN INTERVIEW WITH CLÉMENT PINTEAUX ABOUT ‚DES JEUNES FILLES DISPARAISSENT‘

Clément Pinteaux was born in Paris, France in 1992 and studied literature and philosophy. The young filmmaker took up an editing course at La Fémis film school in Paris in 2013. His films blend fictional, documentary and mythical narratives. „Des jeunes filles disparaissent (Young Girls Vanish)“ is Cléments graduation film and at the same time his first film to be screened at Berlinale.

De jeunes filles disparaissent (Young Girls Vanish)“ tells the story of 58 girls that were devoured by a wolf in French Essonne between 1652 and 1657. Four centuries later, young women are disappearing again in the same region. Clément Pinteaux sets out in search of clues. Crosses on a map mark the locations where the girls were attacked and found back then. A young woman talks about the one who vanished – a woman similar to her and yet different, whose work she continues. Pinteaux observes the girls in their surroundings, together, on the job. Who will be next? Will there be a next time? Situated between staging and documentation, the film meets the girls on an equal footing – tracing moments of potential threat.

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Still from „Des jeunes filles disparaissent (Young Girls Vanish)“

What is your ambition in the film ?

Initially I wanted to make a film from the legends about the wolf in France. Then I discovered this historical episode of the XVII century which tells that a wolf had devoured 58 girls in Gâtinais, France. I knew nothing about the girls, only their name, the date of their death, and the way they had been killed. Returning to the site, I met the girls who lived there today and through them I tried to find these girls of the seventeenth century, to revive them. There is a bridge between all these girls who disappear.

What do you like about the short form ?

The short form interests me because it allows to make films that only hold on a feeling, an impression.

What are your future plans ?

I’m currently writing a film about modern miracles. Otherwise, I work mainly as editor, I have several upcoming film projects with directors that I like very much.

Clément Pinteaux
Clément Pinteaux

„Des jeunes filles disparaissent (Young Girls Vanish)“ will be screened in the Berlinale Shorts Competition. You can get your tickets here.

 

AN INTERVIEW WITH REKA BUCSI ABOUT ‚SOLAR WALK‘

Réka Bucsi  is back at Berlinale Shorts and answers some questions about herself and her new shortfilm.

She was born in Filderstadt, Germany in 1988 and studied animation at the Moholy-Nagy University of Art and Design (MOME) in Budapest between 2008 and 2013. Furthermore the filmmaker attended Animation Sans Frontières (ASF) in Viborg, Denmark, where she also participated in the Open Workshop’s artist-in-residence programme. Réka Bucsi has also been artist in residence at Q21 in Vienna, Austria and presented „Symphony no. 42“ (2014) and „LOVE“ (2016) at Berlinale Shorts previously.

This year the director from Denmark is participating in the Berlinale Shorts Competition with her film „Solar Walk“, wich follows the journey of individuals and their creations in space. Flags are planted. Hands are held. First steps are taken on new worlds. And then the giant lets out a stream of black piss and pees a brand new universe. Two creatures jump into the new blackness of space. They become one with the new world. “Whoever you are. Where you are. And whatever you are. You are in the middle,” Alan Watts reflects in David OReilly’s ‚Everything‘ (Berlinale Shorts 2017). Bucsi pursues this question further, entering into a dialogue.

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Still from ‚Solar Walk‘

What is your ambition in the film?

It was to make a movie, that just gets the viewer out of their skin for the time they are watching it. I wanted to create a careless journey through mind and space.
I find it hard to focus on individual subject matters smaller than the universe itself. Creation, and the question of motivation and ambition were my ambitions.

What do you like about the short form?

I like that shorts have an easy approach to the experimental form of storytelling. You can do pretty much anything that challenges classical narrative forms.
I enjoy that tiny details can play the lead role.

What are your future plans?

I want to make a feature film that enhances what I like about short films.

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Réka Bucsi

„Solar Walk“ is going to be screened five times during the Berlinale Filmfestival. Get your tickets here!

AN INTERVIEW WITH JAYISHA PATEL ABOUT ‚CIRCLE‘

It is the second time that Jayisha Patel will be part of Berlinale Shorts and we have had the chance to hear a few words about her film ‚Circle‚ and future plans.

Born in London, UK in 1987, Jayisha Patel first studied economics at Nottingham University and then film at the Escuela Internacional de Cine y TV in Cuba and the National Film and TV School in the UK. Her short films have screened at renowned international festivals. Jayisha Patel first participated in the Berlinale Shorts Competition in 2014 with her documentary film ‚A Paradise‘. Her work seeks to give a platform in particular to women of colour who are fighting stereotypes. ‚Circle‚ is a film about present-day India. Three men sit at the edge of a field smoking. A woman is crouched in the field working. Another is cleaning the floor in the house. Two young women are shucking peas. One of them tells her sister about her rape and who she blames. It’s her own grandmother’s fault. The fire blazes away out in the field. A film about the cycle of violence and the possibility of escaping it.

22 films from 18 countries will be competing for the Golden and the Silver Bear, as well as the Audi Short Film Award, worth € 20,000, and a nomination for the European Film Awards.

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Still from ‚Circle‘

What is your ambition in the film?

With ‚Circle‘, I wanted to take viewers into Kushbu’s internal world. This is a world that is not seen, but rather felt. The intention was to juxtapose the stunning rural landscapes of Utter Pradesh, with the dark reality of her internal life, so as to challenge the viewer in a visceral way. I hope by doing so, viewers can tap into the unspoken within themselves.

What do you like about the short form? 

I love how short films have this particular type of emotional charge to them. They can be a force of nature, entering with a huge amount of energy and then out of nowhere, disappear, leaving embers behind. They are an opportunity to close a chapter rather than a book, leaving the viewer with many questions unanswered. This is a wonderful thing because it enables the viewer to linger on the film long after they have left the cinema. For me, a short film is also an opportunity to invite a viewer to inhabit a space, rather than explaining all of that space. This is because there is no time to explain everything so the short form becomes this beautiful space to just connect and translate pure emotion. I also love how the limitations associated with making a short film can also force the film to find an inner language. It’s this inner language that I feel can enable a film to take on unconventional approach, leading to potentially bolder pieces of filmmaking. Lastly, I love that structurally, you cannot afford to digress in the same way you can with a feature will. This means you have to have a very rigorous approach to understanding your character and translating that onto the screen. There is nowhere to hide and therefore in doing so, you also confront yourself a lot as a creator, in the hope that the viewer can in turn do so, too.

What are your future plans?

I am currently an artist in residence at Somerset House in London, where I am working on an emotionally responsive virtual reality experience, called ‚After The Fire‘. It is supported by Anidox and the Danish Film Institute. I work a lot at the intersection of documentary filmmaking and technology and this project has really pushed me to explore both forms to their maximum. I am also developing my first narrative feature. A cinematic hybrid set in London dealing with race and womanhood.  Coming from a minority background, I feel that a lot of our narratives have been appropriated, which can be painful at times, and told from a Eurocentric/western gaze so the film is essentially about taking that narrative back, owning it and telling it with nuance from a place of solidarity.

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Jayisha Patel

Check out the screening scedule and make sure to get tickets.

AN INTERVIEW WITH MANQUE LA BANCA ABOUT ‚T.R.A.P‘

22 films from 18 countries will be competing for the Golden and the Silver Bear, as well as the Audi Short Film Award, worth € 20,000, and a nomination for the European Film Awards. ‚T.R.A.P.‚ is one of them. Filmmaker Manque La Banca is answering to some questions in this interview about ‚T.R.A.P‘, the special about shortfilms and his future plans.
Born in Bariloche, Argentina in 1990, Manque La Banca studied film at the Facultad de Bellas Artes in La Plata and photography at the Sindicato de la Industria Cinematográfica Argentina (SICA) in Buenos Aires. In 2012 he and his brother, Antu La Banca, set up the Parquee label for films and music. He has directed various shorts and a feature film and works with Super 8 and 16mm; also released several albums with his band ‚Nunca fui a un parque de diversiones‘. Manque La Banca develops all his films at his own film lab at home.
So he did with ‚T.R.A.P‚ – A film about a mystical place telling an enchanted story: A group of knights go ashore on the banks of the Río De La Plata. They are searching for a grave to perform a ritual. As they pass through the jungle, things happen that cause them to land in the present day. This past summer an individual disappeared during altercations with the police and demonstrations in southern Argentina. “Never again” has been the widespread sentiment since the end of the dictatorship in Argentina, now the old threat seems to be looming again. The filmmaker takes up prevalent stereotypes and breaks them open in order to tell his own story free of hegemonial interference.

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Still from ‚T.R.A.P‘

What is your ambition in the film?

I wanted to tell a story that started on a romantic universe and ended up becoming an intimist contemporary tale, showing a facet of young dissidents in this current Argentina governed by the most conservative political party that the country has had in the last 40 years.
Another interesting point that we explore on ‚T.R.A.P‘ are related to sexual diversity as a form of resistance to dominant discourse. With ‚PARQUEE‘ our audiovisual label, we have been investigating the breaking of stereotypes through images. We are convinced as audiovisual artists that in order to disarm the power structures that govern the world, it is necessary to create stories that question from the heteronormative logics.

What do you like about the short form?

The short form allows to experiment with small ideas that can be the germ of something bigger. There is a kind of liberty on the short films that is difficult to find in other kind expressions. In my case this liberty is achieve with lot of planification, when I start a project of a short film I immerse myself in a meditative state, I draw a lot of images and I write in a free poetic way. For me is very important to find the axis of ideas on paper, because I have a limited amount of time.

What are your future plans?

At the moment I’m writing a new feature film called ‚JERMANS‘. It is a film whose story is derived from ‚T.R.A.P‘ the short film that I am presenting at the Berlinale. I’m exploring the mix between adventure genre films and experimental cinema.

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Manque La Banca

 

Make sure to get tickets for the screenings during the Berlinale Filmfestival!

SAVE THE DATES

Audi Short Film Award: Maike Mia Höhne In Conversation With Karam Ghossein
Sunday, February 18, 4-5pm

180217_HV_0302 Preisverleihung Karam Ghossein, Kimberly Drew

Director Karam Ghossein received the Audi Short Film Award for „Street of Death“ in 2017. Maike Mia Höhne, curator of Berlinale Shorts, meets Ghossein at Berlinale Open House for a talk about his work.

Venue: Audi Berlinale Lounge, Marlene-Dietrich-Platz

Open to the public, no pre-registration required.

U-/S-Bahn Potsdamer Platz
Bus M41, M48, 200

– The talk will be in English language –

 

Notes on Cinema #68: Between Staff Pick, Market & Archive
Thursday, February 22, 2-4pm

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In cooperation with the Embassy of Canada

A panel discussion on the longevity and visibility of films on the internet and in archives.

How can we expand the film canon? How can we access films which are no longer viewable? Is digitization a possibility to (re-)access films which have been lost or overshadowed?
With Mark Toscano (Academy Film Archive), Jeffrey Bowers (Vimeo), Lauren Howes (Canadian Filmmakers Distribution Centre) and Jayisha Patel (filmmaker).

The short films Le Tigre de Tasmanie by Vergine Keaton (Berlinale Shorts), Circle by Jayisha Patel (Berlinale Shorts) and Nuuca by Michelle Latimer (Generation) will be screened. Followed by a Q&A. The panel discussion will begin at 3pm.

Venue: Embassy of Canada, Leipziger Platz 17, 10117 Berlin
Free admission.

Registration required: https://www.eventbrite.de/e/berlinale-shorts-notes-on-cinema-68-tickets-42232959920?aff

Please present a valid photo-ID at the door and allow sufficient time for Embassy security.

 

Berlinale Shorts Party 2018 at Säälchen
Thursday, February 22, 11pm – 5am

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Let’s have a party and dance through the night! Our Berlinale Shorts DJs »Bassito / Tropeninstitut, Chrischan & Alice« will heat you up!

Where: Säälchen, Holzmarktstr. 25, 10243 Berlin
When: Thursday, February 22, 2018
Doors: 11pm
Entrance: 5€

Boom shakalaka!

 

Artist Talks: Berlinale Shorts I – V at CinemaxX
Monday, February 19 – Friday, February 23, right after the 4pm screening

Berlinale2017_Teams_0083AFTER THE FILMS: ARTIST TALKS

Q&A with the filmmakers

Where: CinemaxX Potsdamer Platz, CinemaxX 5
When: approx. 6pm, right after the 4pm screening

Monday, February 19

BERLINALE SHORTS I: Hohe Bäume werfen kurze Schatten / Tall trees throw short shadows

Tuesday, February 20

BERLINALE SHORTS III: Vom Rausch des Lebens / Ecstasy of life

Wednesday, February 21

BERLINALE SHORTS V: Step across the yesterday

Thursday, February 22

BERLINALE SHORTS II: Im Kreis oder Blitze aus dem All / Inside the circle or lightning from outer space

Friday, February 23

BERLINALE SHORTS IV: In der Nacht ist das Flüstern ein Tosen / In the night a whisper is a roar

Everyone is welcome to enter this conversation! Free entrance to the talk after the screening.

16 AUGEN SEHEN MEHR ALS ZWEI

Auf der Suche nach den interessantesten Einreichungen

Im Sichtungsraum herrscht mittlerweile Stille: Die Kaffeetassen sind weggeräumt und der Projektor stößt keine warme Luft mehr aus. Auch Alejo Franzetti, Anna Henckel-Donnersmarck, Egbert Hörmann, Maria Morata, Saskia Walker, Simone Späni und Wilhelm Faber, die mit all ihren individuellen Erfahrungen und Expertisen mit Maike Mia Höhne zusammensaßen, finden sich morgens nicht mehr im Büro ein. Als siebenköpfiges Gremium lieferten sie der Berlinale Shorts Kuratorin bei der Filmauswahl einen inspirierenden Rahmen und standen ihr mit kritischer Unterstützung beiseite.

Durch die immer größer werdende Zahl der Einreichungen in den letzten Jahren hat sich zur 68. Berlinale auch das Gremium der Berlinale Shorts erweitert. „Es geht auch darum, die Vielfältigkeit der Perspektiven weiter ausschöpfen zu können“, so Maike Mia Höhne.

(v. l. Egbert Hörmann, Kuratorin Maike Mia Höhne, Simone Späni, Wilhelm Faber, Maria Morata, Anna Henckel-Donnersmarck, Alejo Franzetti, Saskia Walker)

 

Lasst sie uns kurz genauer vorstellen:

Der Filmemacher Alejo Franzetti war Mitbegründer und Kurator des in Berlin veranstalteten INVASION – das argentinische Filmfestival, nachdem er Filmregie an der Universidad del Cine studierte sowie Meisterschüler bei Thomas Arslan an der Universität der Künste Berlin war. Seit fünf Jahren wohnt er nun in Berlin und bereichert das Auswahlgremium der Berlinale Shorts erstmals mit seinen Blicken.

Anna Henckel-Donnersmarck ist klassisch ausgebildete Filmemacherin und realisiert heute vorwiegend Videoinstallationen für Bühneninszenierungen, Musikperformances und Ausstellungen. Sie ist als Dozentin für Film und Video tätig und arbeitet seit nunmehr 20 Jahren in Auswahlkommissionen und als Moderatorin für eine Vielzahl von Filmfestivals – für die Berlinale Shorts schon seit 10 Jahren. Nach Stationen in Indonesien, Japan, England, New York und Ludwigsburg lebt sie jetzt in Berlin.

Egbert Hörmann ist ein altbewährtes Gesicht bei der Berlinale. Begonnen 1995 für die Sektion Panorama, ist er seit ihrem Bestehen Gremiumsmitglied der Sektion Berlinale Shorts. Er ist Kulturjournalist, Autor von zwei Büchern mit Essays und Herausgeber von Anthologien – studierte Amerikanistik, Anglistik und lebt hauptsächlich in Berlin, gerne auch in Sankt Petersburg.

Schon seit 2009 ist die freiberufliche Kuratorin und Universitätsdozentin Maria Morata Mitglied der Auswahlkommission. Sie hat in Madrid, Paris und Berlin studiert. Mit dem Schwerpunkt in experimentellem und Avant-Garde Film trägt sie zu den diversen Perspektiven bei, die bei der Auswahl der Filme von hoher Bedeutung sind.

Die Filmemacherin, Kuratorin und Übersetzerin Saskia Walker studierte und arbeitete in Frankreich und Russland und ist seit 2011 stetiges Mitglied des Auswahlgremiums der Sektion Berlinale Shorts. Neben der Arbeit im Gremium ist sie außerdem Mitherausgeberin von Revolver – Zeitschrift für Film.

Für Filmkuratorin Simone Späni ist es das erste Jahr im Gremium der Berlinale Shorts. Die Erfahrungen, die sie als Mitglied der Auswahlkommission und Vorstandsmitglied bei den Internationalen Kurzfilmtagen Winterthur gesammelt hat, lässt sie in ihre Arbeit einfließen. Des Weiteren ist sie Mitunterstützerin von REALNESS – An African Screenwriter Residence in Südafrika und arbeitet in den Bereichen Filmproduktion, Musik und Theater in Zürich, Genf und Kigali.

Seit nun mehr 25 Jahren arbeitet auch Wilhelm Faber für die Berlinale. Neben Programmkoordination und Organisationsentwicklung ist die Auswahl von Kurzfilmen im Gremium beständiger und immer anregender Teil seiner Arbeit.

 

Gesichtet wird immer von mindestens zwei Personen, bevor die Filme, die es auf die Warteliste geschafft haben, in großer Runde vom gesamten Gremium besprochen werden. Und wie im Leben abseits des Berlinale-Trubels auch, prallen unterschiedliche Ansichten gerne mal aufeinander und es herrscht nicht immer Einigkeit. Manchmal aber auch doch, dann gibt es diese magischen Momente und Entdeckungen, bei denen es kaum noch Diskussionsbedarf gibt: „Das passiert, wenn wir eigentlich alle vor lauter Hingucken gar nicht mehr denken können – was natürlich ein wunderbarer Moment ist, weil der Film einen dann im Ganzen ergreift. Warum das so ist, wird natürlich dennoch hinterfragt.“

Für dieses Jahr ist ihre Arbeit vollbracht – sie haben einander ein letztes Mal tief in ihre 16 Augen geblickt und sich für 24 Filme entschieden – zwei davon laufen außer Konkurrenz. Die ausgewählten Filmemacher*innen konkurrieren nun mit ihren neuen Werken um den Goldenen und Silbernen Bären sowie den mit 20.000€ dotierten Audi Short Film Award und die Nominierung für den besten Kurzfilm  für die European Film Awards.

Los geht’s – hier ist das Berlinale Shorts Programm 2018!