«MAKING FILMS IS AN ACT OF FAITH»

OLIVIER ASSAYAS HAS BEEN IN MAR DEL PLATA. THE FRENCH DIRECTOR GAVE A MASTER CLASS, PRESENTED HIS FILMS IN A PACKED ROOM AND SHARED HIS VISION OF CINEMA WITH THE FESTIVAL.

 "I’ve learnt to write scripts since I was very young, at 19, with my father- the famous script writer and director Jacques Remy-, and in addition I wrote shorts for my friends”, remembers the director of Irma Vep, "For me, writing scripts was a quite fast process. The deepest change was passing from painting and plastic arts, which gave me a lot of pleasure when I was young, to cinema. This was more important and difficult”. 
 
Olivier Assayas is one of the rebel boys of the French cinema. His films are very different one from another, and some people compare him with the directors of Nouvelle Vague. His film career went through different periods, and apart from that, he was one of the most influential editors of the historic magazine Cahiers Du Cinema in the 80s, because he had the insight and vision to discover – and take- the new Asian cinema, as the one of Hou Hsiao-Hsien, to Europe.
 
"Cahiers Du Cinema is a magazine that has always reflected its time; both the best and the worst of it. Each generation has written its own story as I have written mine. I have collaborated with the magazine for long and it was very important because it helped me discover the world. Afterwards, I started making films and left for other generations the destiny of the magazine”, declares Assayas about his past as editor.

The director of Clean, lover of the genre cinema, made numerous thrillers, such as the outstanding Demonlover- to be screened at this Festival- Boarding Gate and the miniseries Carlos. He stated lots of times being a fan of Michael Mann’s esthetic, and there are quite a few that find similarities between the esthetics of the director of Heat and this edition deluxe guest’s.

 "It´s true that Michael Mann is a director I much respect, but I wouldn’t say that my way of making films were a continuation of his, nor that I was inspired by him”, answers Assayas. "There are other directors such as Robert Bresson who has influenced me more when I was young”.
   

 

 

Personal Shopper, his last film, which won the Palm d’or in Cannes for the best mise-en-scene. "This film, in fact, originated from my meeting with Kristen Stewart”, tells the director. "When we filmed Clouds of Sils Maria a door was opened. She allowed me to explore a contemporary character, with a real and tangible life, and also a dimension of the unconscious.

 "For me, Kristen is an actress with physical presence and real and sensitive weight, but at the same time she has a very rich and complex interior life” affirms the director, "she’s capable of expressing this interior and displaying it in the cinema. For me, this is a very strange quality in an actress. If I wouldn’t have met Kristen, I wouldn´t have made this film, because there’s no other contemporary actress that could do what she has done”.

Olivier Assayas is happy to be in Mar del Plata. For him, traveling and accompanying his films is an excellent opportunity to talk and find other people fond of cinema to interchange opinions. "At the Master Class I could talk with lovers of art, I expressed myself and shared what I think about the cinema. This is my objective each time I travel. Through the films I attempt to dialogue with international public, people from all over the world. In addition, Argentina is a country with a very modern cinema of international quality”.
 
R. G. Weisskirch


WHAT CINEMA MEANS FOR OLIVIER ASSAYS:


 "Cinema is an art I have been lucky to master. I have been able to reflect, write, see and make other genre of cinema. Through the direction, I’ve depicted my personal tastes in other artistic branches, such as painting and literature. For me, making films is a way to see life, to see the world, to see the human and I’m proud to be able to do it”, reflects the filmmaker.

"For me, cinema is the most relevant contemporary art. It’s an endless source of inspiration and entertainment. It’s a privilege to use it to see the world, represent it, try to catch it and take it to the new generations and to the people around me. I attempt to mirror what I see. There are other artistic manifestations, but I feel that cinema is the contemporary art that gives the artists a fresh, concrete and deeper tool. It’s like an act of magic. When I make films, for me it’s like an act of faith and belief”.

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