“Alan and Beverly, away hiking on a romantic getaway, cause the death of a marmot without noticing it. But this incident will not stay unpunished.” The team behind WILD LOVE talks to Get Reel Movies, featuring Paul Autric, Quentin Camus, Maryka Laudet, Léa Georges, Zoé Sottiaux, & Corentin Yvergniaux.
Welcome to the amazing SxSW and congratulations on your movie playing here! Are you planning to attend SxSW with your film?
Thank you! Yes, this is our first time at SXSW. We are a team of six directors, freshly graduated from our school in France, l’Ecole des Nouvelles Images in Avignon. So we haven’t seen much of the outside world yet! We are all now living in London, and it is quite a long way to Austin. So only half of the team will attend to SxSW.
How did you first hear about the short films at SxSW and wishing to send your film into the festival/conference?
We have a wonderful distributor, Luce Grosjean from Miyu Distribution who is helping us to send our film into festivals. We talked about where we would love to see the film going, and SxSW was obviously one of the most exciting places. In addition to the huge opportunity for us to attend and present our film here, SxSW has this crazy, atypical vibe that we could totally relate to.
Tell me about the idea behind your project and getting it made!
That all started with a strong feeling that it was our true mission and duty to the world to finally tell the truth about marmots. They are not what they seem to be…
Honestly, from the beginning, we wanted to create an animated short film for an adult audience. Animation is often seen as directed only to children, and we believe that it is way more than that. We also wanted with this film to trick the audience, play with their expectations, and to try to make them pass through all kinds of emotions, and most of all, make them laugh.
We worked on this project during a whole year in our school in Avignon. It is quite a special process because the six of us took care of every part of the film. From building the story to all the differents steps in CG that we have to go through to deliver the final project. This was a year of really hard work, but at the same time it was extremely rewarding, and we are not going to lie, we all had a lot of fun along the way.
Who are some of your main creative inspirations for this short?
We have very different types of inspirations for our short. We used typical codes from various kind of film genre such as typical romantic comedy, horror film and action. We used mechanisms that are easily recognised and assimilated by the audience. Then we mixed them and played with it to make them become something else.
How did you put the short together from a technical viewpoint and any creative challenges in making it?
We work with CG Animation. On the technical side, the six of us have got different specialities, as modelling, texturing or animation. The strength of our team was probably that we were well balanced.
We had a lot of creative challenges. Starting with choosing the right style of the film. We chose to have cartoony shapes and animation, but to work with a realistic render. We wanted people to believe to the story, and at the same time, keeping a distance with what is happening to make it laughable. It is very subtle to find the right balance between the graphic style and the story.
After your short screens here, where is it going next? Anywhere you would love to show it?
We don’t really know where our film is going next or where we expect it to be. We are already amazed by the journey it is taking. For now we just enjoy the selections we have with WILD LOVE, and of course, we hope it will continue this way as long as possible.
What would you suggest to theatres or even film festivals as a way to show more short films theatrically or make them more accessible to audiences across the country?
There are already a lot of great short films festivals everywhere, from small towns festivals to big events, as we’re discovering it with our film now! For theaters, maybe it would be nice to have a short film screened before the film you’re going to see. We are used to that for gigs for example. There is always an opening part before the main artist playing, which actually often leads to great discoveries. Why not having this more often with short films in theatres?
If you know of anyone around you wanting to become a filmmaker, or even put together shorts, what would you suggest to get their start?
That is a tough question as we are still at the beginning of our career. But we think one of the thing that we learned so far is that hard work and perseverance are your best weapons, and usually ends up paying off. Don’t be afraid to learn things that seem too complicated, if you’re truly committed, it is doable.
Also, one of the important things when we think about storytelling is to try to have enough distance to ask yourself if your story and how you are telling it matches the effect you want it to have on the spectator. It is hard to look at your work with a fresh vision when you are working on it a lot, but we think this distance can make you aware of flaws in the film and have better chances to avoid them. Learning to be critical about your own work is key.
And finally, what is your favourite short film of all time?
As we are six people, it is so hard to agree on one favourite short of all time! And that could lead to a very long and dangerous debate between us! But we do remember a short film we all watched and which probably inspired us in some way. It is called GEIST, and it is a CG animated short made by Giant Studios. We all loved the special atmosphere it has.
This is one of the many film titles playing at SxSW 2019. For more information on this and any other title playing in the festival, point your browser to http://www.sxsw.com/film!