That’s a very original idea and very apt when it comes to the short format. Can you tell us a bit more about it?
The idea came about when I was invited to go to Galapagos and I decided I wanted to make a film while I was there. I have always loved meta-films and mockumentaries. A film set is such a surreal place, so many crazy characters and big egos, a rich environment to take inspiration from. I thought it would be an interesting experiment to transfer one of these characters into the nature documentary world. To create a character, in this case a director, who tries too control something that is inherently uncontrollable; wild animals.
How did you come to cast Esteban Barrera?
We where originally going to have a traditional casting session in Ecuador. But then I met a photographer that was going traveling with us, Esteban Barrera and I thought he was perfect. He took a little bit of convincing because he is a great nature photographer and he was worried that people would think it was real and actually portraying what he does. But after reading parts of the script and reassuring him by not using his real name in the film, he was happy to play the part. In a sense we made the film together. I wrote a basic script, but every day before we started filming Esteban and I sat down and wrote new dialogue and shaped the character together.
Are you particularly interested in very short films or are you keen to explore other formats or genres?
I like the short format for the freedom it gives one to play and to try out ideas. That being said, I would love to make a longer fiction piece. Currently I am working on a mini documentary (real this time).
Any cinematic coups de cœur in the past year you’d like to tell us about?
I just watched a short film by Hamy Ramona and Rungano Nyoni called Listen which I thought was amazing. The past year for me has been about watching documentaries and was blown away by Adam Curtis’ Hypernormalisation. It was such a perfect mix of ideas with a really interesting point of view.
If you’ve already been to the Clermont-Ferrand, could you share with us an anecdote or story from the festival? If not, what are your expectations for this edition?
I do not now what to expect, but I am excited!