FILM

FRINGE! Queer Film Festival 2018
Zara Dwinger 
SIRENE
Netherlands
Shorts: ASSISTED CONCEPTION
SUN NOV 18, 17:00, HACKNEY HOUSE | 26 min | FREE

Kay meets Melody and finds their dormant emotions exposed and nurtured into something beautiful.

 

Hey Zara thanks for talking to TNC, your short film Sirene will be screened at Fringe! Queer Film Fest this November, what does it mean for you to be at the festival?


It is such an honour to be screened at the Fringe!. I think it is so important that festivals like yours exist, so I am so happy that our short film can contribute to that.  

How important is it for LGBTQ+ films like yours to have a platform like Fringe! Queer Film Fest to be screened?


I think it is great that a platform like Fringe! exists. People from the LGBTQ+ community aren't represented much in mainstream media, and I guess that is a really important thing to have. To see a film and be able to really connect. That can give a lot feeling of belonging, which anyone in the world should be able to feel.

Do you think film festivals like this open up LGBTQ+ lives and stories to a wider, perhaps mainstream audience?


Probably, yes. Hopefully!

Tell me a little bit about Sirene, how did this film come about?


The film is a graduation film, so it is made when we were in our last year of film school. We worked on it for more than a year, and really put all our blood, sweat and tears in it. I really wanted it to be good! Not only because it felt like it was our first step into the real world, but also because I really wanted to do the protagonist honour. It couldn't be a corny movie, or too explicit. It was important that it hit the right emotions and approach with subtlety.

Sirene

What was the inspiration behind your film?


The inspiration was the real story of a transgender child. I was so touched by the self-assurance and great positivity this kid had. I was fascinated by her, so I decided to make a film about it. While developing the story we decided to focus on another part of this process though. I was intrigued by the uncertain fate of not yet knowing who you really are and how you really feel. This was something I could identify with personally. The struggle of self-acceptance is something a lot of people go through I think.

What were the biggest challenges you faced making Sirene?


The biggest challenge was getting the story right. As I said, I really wanted to do it justice. The search for subtlety versus clarity was something that I had to go through in both writing and editing. Eventually, I felt like the emotion had to be right, even more than the exact story. Focusing on the feeling of the protagonist was the most important, and a real breakthrough in the making of this film. 

Sirene

Have you always wanted to be a filmmaker?


Yes and no. I always knew I wanted to be an artist or at least do something creative. I also had a slight obsession with film from when I was a teenager. But really getting to the confidence level of saying out loud that I wanted to be a filmmaker and really committing to doing it took me a long while. 

"I hope they will go back to their own memories of their teenage years."

Do you have any advice or tips for any fellow filmmaker?


Don't get hung up on the result, enjoy the process. This is something I actually have to say to myself more than anybody, haha.

And finally, what do you hope people will take away from Sirene?


I hope it will open their hearts. And if that's too big of a goal, at least I hope they will go back to their own memories of their teenage years.