– The collective audiovisual work was produced by 42 film professionals, all former students of Berlinale Talents 2021, scattered around the world and only meeting virtually
A still of TOGETHER
“From a ghostly presence in India, a dystopian and peaceful world, an exploration of Mars and childhood memories in Jerusalem, to a restricted social life in New York.” This is a brief introduction to TOGETHERa collective audiovisual work produced by 42 film professionals from 32 countries, which has completed its post-production and is aiming for a premiere at the festival in the coming months.
All members of the collective are alumni of the 2021 edition of the Berlinale Talents, and since the launch of the online event, they have seized the opportunity to initiate a cinematic dialogue across continents in times of a global pandemic. , without meeting physically . For more than eight months, their collaboration has evolved organically into a mosaic of places, stories and reflections on topics that resonate with each of them.
As for the original idea of the project, it came from the German director-screenwriter Anne Thieme and UK distributor Jacqueline Wang. The work of the professionals was based on their manifesto “For an animist cinema. Filmmaking in Pandemic Times” (read more here), which was first suggested by the Belgian film critic and director Matthias De Groof but was finalized collectively, and then they tried to work as one collective mind while preserving enough space for individuals as well.
The collective decided to “dream through film and film through dreams by communicating through video letters. The window as an aesthetic trope is our analogy to the big screen. All the talents (involved in filming, editing, composition, narration…) have been brought together in a cinematic journey. It became a cinematic experience with several voices, a creative process where each participant created a narrative piece. The project reflects the mindsets of many makers using the visual medium in multiple ways.
The rules were that they had to make the film with all the resources (whether mental or pragmatic) they had in their country, keeping in mind the various restrictions imposed by the pandemic. Everyone has found a different way to contribute to this audiovisual dialogue, whether it’s shooting the streets like a guerrilla, working with archives, adopting the restrictions of a shot in a room using a laptop camera or reaching out to others to inspire a response with video.
The collective holds frequent Zoom meetings for five months, in order to refine its concept and to go around ideas, opening itself to all kinds of contemporary reflections on the world at that time. They also had strict deadlines to complete and share their visions within ten different groups, and they then passed the material on to the Brazilian publisher. hiperlinqueBurmese sound designer Eaiddhiand composers Damien Scholl from Germany and Anahit Simonian of France, who will shape it into its final form. In addition, the film features actors Anastasia Reshetnikova (Netherlands), Marina Palii (Romania), Nina Kiri (Canada), Brilliant kind (Philippines) and others.
french director Romain Champalaune was mainly in charge of the meetings, but the process as such was very organic, participatory and fluid, without any strict hierarchical structure, which is a remarkable achievement, considering that this collaboration has extended to the whole world.
TOGETHER is presented as a “cinematic dream” bringing together Argentina, Armenia, Austria, Belgium, Brazil, Canada, Chile, Finland, France, Germany, Greece, Hong Kong, Hungary, India, Italy, Japan, Mexico, Myanmar, Netherlands, Pakistan, Panama, Peru, Philippines, Romania, Russia, Slovakia, Slovenia, Spain, Turkey, United Kingdom and United States United.