EXCLUSIVE: ENSEMBLE wraps up post-production – Cineuropa

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– The collective audiovisual work was produced by 42 cinema professionals, all former students of Berlinale Talents 2021, scattered around the world and meeting only 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 TOGETHER, a collective audiovisual work directed by 42 film professionals from 32 countries, which has completed post-production and is aiming for a festival premiere in the coming months.

All members of the collective are alumni of the 2021 edition of Berlinale talents, and since the launch of the online event, they have taken the opportunity to engage in a cinematic dialogue across continents during 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 resonating with each of them.

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Regarding the original idea of ​​the project, it comes 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 ”(more here), suggested for the first time by the Belgian film critic and director Matthias De Groof but was finalized collectively, then they tried to work as one collective mind while still 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 with the big screen. All the talents (involved in filming, editing, composition, narration …) were brought together in a cinematographic journey. It became a multi-voice cinematic experience, a creative process where each participant created a narrative piece. The project reflects the mindset of many creators 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 is filming guerrilla-style in the streets, working with archives, accepting the restrictions of filming in a room using a laptop camera or addressing others to inspire a response with the video.

The collective held Zoom meetings frequently for five months, in order to refine their concept and brainstorm ideas, opening up to all kinds of contemporary thinking about the world at that time. They also had strict deadlines to complete and share their visions among ten different groups, and they then passed the material on to the Brazilian publisher. hiperlinque, Burmese sound designer Eaiddhi, and composers Damien scholl from Germany and Anahit simonian of France, which would give it its final form. In addition, the film features actors Anastasia Reshetnikova (Netherlands), Marina palii (Romania), Nina Kiri (Canada), Shine generator (Philippines) and others.

French director Romain Champalaune was mainly in charge of the meetings, but the process itself was very organic, participatory and fluid, without any strict hierarchical structure, which is a remarkable achievement, considering that this collaboration covered the whole world.

TOGETHER is presented as a “cinematographic dream” taking in 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.

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