Interview with director Alexander Kuzovkov   

  • Was there a particular event or time when you realized that filmmaking is your way of telling stories?

It seems to me that I wanted to make films since adolescence, although I studied for completely opposite specialties. Later I developed a passion for photography and, quite late, making films.

  • Do you think that in order to become a successful director, it is necessary to go to a motion picture college?

I do not see this as a necessary requirement. We both know many examples when people who create outstanding films did not study at special institutions. However, it is necessary to study cinema, to understand its intricacies. In the end, you have to get a feel. It does not matter whether it is online courses or watching movies in a video rental.

  • What is more difficult – to start or to continue? What exactly did you have to overcome to do this or that?

Getting started is always harder. I can compare it to a large train, which is slowly picking up speed. So is the creation of a film, all the most complex and difficult stages are at the beginning, in preparation, in assembling a team.

  • What is the most important lesson you had to learn that had a positive impact on your film? How did this lesson come about?

I think it’s freedom of expression and lack of editing and censorship. When you make a work the way you intended it comes out smoother, without compromise. Also, you must be prepared to do everything by yourself.

  • What production realities, from casting to editing, did you have to consider? How did you deal with those compromises or surprises and still end up with a coherent film?

It was all about the film’s budget. We understood that we could not afford famous actors, expensive scenery and other things. Everything was done on our own, and it is worth noting that this is not always a bad thing. Yes, it creates certain inconveniences, but it does not always affect the result.

  • What was the most difficult artistic choice you made when making a film, at any stage of production?

Right on the first day of shooting, the approved actress refused to act. Imagine, literally the entire film crew was at the location, everything was ready, but she did not show herself. Fortunately, we later found and approved an actress who fit even better.

  • You are a part of a team. How did you find your team members and how do you manage to maintain strong relationships with them?

The main team members know each other for a long time. With others we made friends in the process and continue to work. Actually, this project is unique, we were driven by the idea and interest.

  • What do the audience want? And is it the director’s role to worry about it?

Perhaps this is a question for the producers. The director shoots for himself.

  • What role have film festivals played in your life so far? Why are they needed? How do you get the most out of them?

To be honest, this is the first experience in film festivals. But the need for them definitely exists, they allow you to draw attention to your film and give you inspiration for further work.

  • Do you think a director should be original and fresh or should he or she stick to a classic but safe film style?

If we are talking about a short film festival, then the organizers literally say: “We are looking for new, fresh views”. Otherwise, everything is at the discretion of the director and his audience.