Berlinale Shorts | 2019
Victoria Giesen Carvajal
At the 2019 edition of Berlinale Shorts, 24 films from 17 countries will be competing for the Golden and Silver Bear, the Audi Short Film Award (endowed with 20,000 euros) and a nomination as “Berlin Short Film Candidate for the European Film Awards 2019”.
A fishing cove somewhere: This is where Gabriel works with a group of young men. An androgynous being appears and Gabriel falls in love. The woman disappears, a blaze is ignited.
Hi Victoria thanks for talking to TNC, you all set for the festival?
Yes, I’m ready.
Are there any nerves ahead of your Berlinale screening?
I’m very nervous.
How does it feel to be having your World Premiere at the festival, does this add any additional pressure on you?
The Berlinale was for me an almost platonic possibility. This is the first premiere of my life and it is a tremendous honour to be at this festival.
Tell me a little bit about Hector, how did this film come about?
It's a looong story. It was born with a script that today has nothing to do with the result but that took me to the location of the fishing cove in which it happens. It was a short film, then we dreamed a long one, we shot thinking about a medium length film and finally decided it was a short one. However, the point of departure and the pivot of always was the relationship between desire and power and how they converge in the need for classification.
What was the biggest challenge you faced bringing this film to life?
We almost did not have a budget but the people who participated helped that it did not seem so complicated. I think that the most complicated thing has been put in order my own head, learning to trust in my taste and learning to finish.
Looking back is there anything you would do differently?
Hahaha yes, a lot of things. We started this short film at the end of 2015, but we finished it in 2018. My ideas, forms and experience had changed so I could have changed almost everything; however, it helped me to think of my present as someone who helped that Victoria two years ago to finish what she wanted to say. I could say that the current meaning of the film is the negotiation between both moments.
"...this short film, at least, is far from being mine alone."
Have you always been interested in filmmaking?
Yes, but I think as anyone who enjoys it. I did not imagine dedicating myself to this as a child. I must admit that when I started studying Design in Image and Sound at the University of Buenos Aires, I thought I was going to study something else. It was a progressive infatuation.
As a filmmaker how important is the collaborative process for you?
The journey of this short film has been in some way a second school for me, I was wrong many times and I was lucky to have a very creative team that in addition to providing ideas, allowed me to try and doubt many times. The process was tremendously collaborative in creative and production terms to the point of becoming confusing in their areas. Creating collaboratively is perhaps more complex and requires other times but it seems more enriching and fun. I think you cannot separate the discourse of a film from its forms of production, so if as an artist I want to defend inclusion and visibility, I could not act as a director for others to work with. I aspire to execute the direction more as a guiding thread, an engine, rather than as "the source of creativity". In fact, I find it very ungrateful to talk about "someone's movie", this short film, at least, is far from being mine alone.
How has your approach to your work changed since your debut short film?
I think the most significant thing has been the evaluation of the execution. I tend to be very abstract and to build complete projects in my head. During these years and especially with this first premiere, I understood that you cannot completely plan work and an idea will never be ripe before starting to produce it. Although I have always valued collaborative work, I understood very recently that the abstraction of an idea is a form of control over it. For others to participate, it is necessary to generate support that the rest can also interpret and contribute.
"I tend to be very abstract and to build complete projects in my head. "
Do you have any advice or tips for a fellow filmmaker?
I have one at hand. The storyboards are good notes, it is also a good way to explain an idea, but I think they should be outside the shootings, or be very iconic. The overview of a shot many times makes you lose sight of what happens at the time of filming. Ah! And never forget, good catering is a fundamental part of a good shoot.
What are you currently working on?
I'm with two projects; one is a documentary in the south of Chile recently in the process of investigation and the other one is a super personal one that I am working in the form of an audiovisual blog.
And finally, what do you hope people will take away from this film?
I hope it's something I do not expect. It will be a lot if they are left with a new question.