Francisco Varone presents Road to La Paz in the Argentine Competition
Many times, life faces us with people we would not have imagined. And, little by little, relationships grow, based less on coincidences than on differences. Francisco Varone brings us a sensitive road movie with Sebastián, a young man whose passions are Vox Dei band and his old Peugeot 505, and Jalili, a not very gentle old Sufi man who offers Sebas a huge amount of money to take him to Ciudad de la Paz in Bolivia. A journey of meetings and disagreements thus begins, in that faint rope that divides what brings us together and what pulls us apart.
Where did the idea of Road to La Paz come from?
The idea came a long time ago, around 2001. I wanted to tell the story of an unemployed man who becomes a cab driver by chance. As time went by, other elements appeared, like the passenger who offers him a huge amount of money to take him to a faraway place.
In this particular road movie, there is a mixture of not only the character’s inner change but also friendship, religion, the acceptance of others. How did you work from the script these levels of meaning?
I always focused on the story and the characters. I never consciously thought of working with a subject or an idea. I believe such elements as the character’s inner change come naturally if the story has an organic development. Once the script was more developed, I did work specifically on the general balance of the story and all of its elements, but always giving priority to narrative fluency and the realistic aspect.
How did you work to create the protagonist’s profile, remarkably portrayed by Rodrigo de la Serna?
My initial inspiration was an old friend of mine, so I knew him well. Then, with the different versions of the script, I got to know better the character of Sebas and I moved away from my model; that’s how I found his own profile. Rodrigo and I talked a lot before shooting, we watched scenes from other films and then he portrayed him perfectly, better than what I had imagined.
What were the difficulties when it came to shooting, considering the huge number of locations?
Shooting is always difficult, there are always unexpected events, problems to solve constantly. Of course, traveling to Bolivia with the crew, the car and the dogs wasn’t easy. But it was part of the adventure. I always pictured the shooting like this; I knew we would have to face the road, the weather and many misfortunes, but we saw everything as part of the adventure. I think it was a unique and difficult shooting, but we enjoyed it and made the most of it since we shot in amazing places.
What are your next projects?
Right now I’m working as a scriptwriter for other directors, in films and fictional series. I already have the synopsis of my next films; in January I’ll start working on the first draft. But I’m not anxious to start shooting; right now, I want to enjoy the film’s premier and the festival circuit. My next film will come in due time.
MON 2, 10.20 am, ALD 5
MON 2, 6.50 pm, ALD 5
TUE 3, 4.00 pm, ALD 5