Every academic year, third year Film students get to put up a Film Festival at King’s throughout their module ‘Film Festival Studies’. For a week, different projects on different genres are screened for free in the whole university. In this context, on December 6th, Sabrina Semidei, Marie Pilette, Mathea Anderson and Elodie Cherblanc will host an evening focused on French Independent Cinema. For this occasion, the French director Bruno Lopez is coming for a Q&A and the first UK screening of his film « Good People ».
Marie Pilette replies to Roar’s enquires about the project in order not only to highlight what it is like to put up such a project as a student, but also why it represents a great opportunity for King’s students to familiarize themselves with this genre of French cinema.
First of all, why did you choose Bruno Lopez’s film ?
A girl from our group, Elodie, had the chance to attend the premiere of the film in France over the summer. The story is about a robbery, where two accomplices accidentally kidnap a little girl while robbing a car. Despite her young age, the girl carries secret wounds that the two gangsters eventually discover. We were all hooked by the style and the psychology of the characters, and contacted Lopez who showed immediate interest and motivation.
How is this project different from the others ?
During our years of study at King’s College, our desire to work within the cinematic industry has gradually grown. I came to the realization that this opportunity to project a movie was a way for us to assess our views on the world of cinema, imbued in a love for independent and original projects rather than gigantic commercial ones. We wanted to create an event where the spotlight was on independent French cinema, on its beauty but also its accessibility, as the film is available for students across all departments. I don’t know if this makes the project more different than all the others, but it for sure renders it very personal.
Why did you decided to focus on the French Indie Cinema in particular ? Why should people be interested in that genre ?
We find that the French cinema is still very little represented in London, and if it is, it is strongly idealized and romanticized. This for us film is authentic, poetic and sincere, and allow a different stance on characters, relationships and ideas one might have seen in other movies. French Indie Cinema is such an umbrella term, from the masterpieces of the French New Wave to more experimental short movies. Here, we showcase what we believe it is all about – tenderness and talent. In addition, Good People is a film that has encountered difficulties in its making and its production. This can be felt while watching the movie, and conveys a genuine and authentic feeling that the audience will certainly still feel hours after watching the film.
Talking on behalf of people who might be interested in being part of such project next year, I want to go on a more logistical side. Did you have some budget for the project ?
No, actually, none. We had to find some sponsors and partnerships to finance everything – including train tickets and hotel fees for the coming of our guests. For example, the French Institute offered a hotel room for Bruno Lopez. A crowdfunding helped us finance all the other extra costs. It’s a lot of work and stress, but before all so much fun and pride to see your project finally come about at the end of the semester!
To conclude, do you think it crystallized your willingness to work in the industry ?
Yes, definitely! We have always studied cinema from a very theoretical perspective, but being able to finally get hands-on experience and express our creative vision was a very rewarding project. It gave us responsibility and taught me professionalism. I am so excited for what’s to come!
The screening will take place at the Anatomy Theatre on the 6th of December at 7pm. It will be followed by an interview and Q&A led by Professor Sarah Cooper. Book your free tickets here.