Category Archives: Three Questions to…

Three Questions to…

Tonino Benacquista, French author and screenwriter is a member of the 2011 jury of Les Arcs European Film Festival. What does he think of today’s European cinema? What is he expecting of being a member of the jury? He answers in three questions.

Tonino Benacquista,
Author and screenwriter, member of the 2011 Jury

  • As a member of the 2011 jury of the 3rd edition of Les Arcs European Film Festival, what are you excepting from this experience?

I am delighted to participate in this festival. I am always very careful about how we work on fiction in any country. Does Europe “fiction”? Does it first need to deal with its recent history, to dwell on this or that phenomenon, or does it offer new narrative devices, dream machines just like Hollywood used to produce some years ago ?

  • You have co-written with Jacques Audiard scenarios of Read My Lips and The Beat That My Heart Skipped, both César winners. What are your future projects for the cinema?

My principle is to never speak about my projects before they are fully completed and shot…

  • You write for literature, film, comic… what are the type of writing for which you take the most pleasure?

The pleasure is not really a factor. My concern is to find for every idea of narrative the good way to put it into words. Some stories need images, which makes me go to the comic, or film. If this is a “closed-door”, I’ll go towards theater. And when I need to develop one or more themes that describe more inner worlds, I go to the novel.

Three Questions to…

This year again, Les Arcs European Film Festival brings itself up to date by focusing on new media through conferences, professional meetings and debates around the new stakes of transmedia and crossmedia. To be prepared, we ask our 3 questions to an expert in the field, Caroline Maret, Head of Transmedia Contents development for the fiction at TF1.

Caroline Maret,
Head of Transmedia Contents Development – Fiction Department – TF1

  • Can you give us your definition of crossmedia and transmedia?

Crossmedia is a strategy which consists of delivering a same content on multiple platforms (controlling the specific potential of each of them) to reach its audience.
Transmedia is the fact of telling a story its narrative background is articulated through several platforms. Here, it is the story that is in the heart of the process: each media brings its narrative contribution to liven up a specific aspect of a global fictive experience.

  • How do you use trans/cross media in your profession?

I am attached to the French Fiction Department at TF1. My role is to develop digital narrative contents alongside the French fictions of the channel. Today, it is about checking out, which program has the potential in its universe, plot, target, etc. to be developed outside the channel and to give to our audience the possibility to get involved. This type of writing participates in the creation of strong meetings on each of our screens and in the development of the experience around our programmes beyond the channel and the catch-up.

  • Case in point?

Today, the example the most representative of this cross/transmedia plan among TF1 fictions is Clem.

Clem tells the story of a 16-year old teenager who find out too late that she is pregnant and who then have no other choice than keeping her child. The pilot, broadcasted in 2010, deals with the 9 months before the delivery, the following 3 episodes, broadcasted in 2011, deals with the everyday life of Clem with her baby, supported by her family and friends and who does everything to live a normal life, continuing her studies, giving herself the right to fall in love again, despite of all the difficulties of being a mum too soon.

Our Transmedia plan was to start telling the story of Clem two months before the pilot would be broadcasted on the channel by setting up a Blog on which we posted every week a video showing a young teenager called Clem, confiding herself to the camera. First, the Blog was not linked to a programme: for the audience who watched the first videos, Clem was potentially a real teenager.

To accompany the promotion and the broadcasting of the three following episodes, we made the Blog evolved in a social network with a 10-week transmedia plan, involving 8 characters (Clem + friends + 8th character being the Internet user), one entry point for each character (via daily videos, comments, likes, surveys), and a new weekly narrative plot dedicated to the Blog. The story was built and feed simultaneously on four platforms (the channel/the Blog/MyTF1.fr/facebook).

As for the Crossmedia plan, the promotion campaign of the programme was spread on the channel, the web, via posters, on the radio and in the press. It was planed in a way it could create a bounce effect between platforms (beyond the meeting on the channel, towards MyTF1.fr, the Blog, MyTF1VOD, the book, etc.).

The programme was available on all of our screens (channel, box, web, tablet, smartphone), accompany by additional contents (bonus, making-of, deleting scenes…) with here again a bounce effect from one screen to another (from the programme broadcasted on the channel to a content only available on the internet, from the episodes in catch-up to the VOD of the pilot, from the Blog to the book, or to the complete Clem in videos, etc.)

Three Questions to…

Frédéric Boyer, Artistic Director of Les Arcs European Film Festival, and former General Manager of the Directors’ Fortnight from 2009 to 2011, explains his work as a passionate film programmer and tells us a bit more about the “Italy Focus” of this year’s festival.

Frédéric Boyer,
Artistic Director of Les Arcs European Film Festival

  • How do you select your films? Do you follow a certain « editorial Policy »?

To select films, I have to make decisions once I’ve got an overview of what has been produced in European cinema in 2011. That is why it is important to attend the major festivals of the autumn, such as San Sebastian, Venice, and even Toronto.

The selection must be diversified. From the discovery of young filmmakers, to the affirmation of more experienced directors, the common point between them is for me the way they see the world; cinema being the art of the point of view.

Europe has a North side and a South side, from Scandinavia to the Mediterranean costs, a West side and an East side, from France to Russia. For me it seems essential to take from this “geo-cinematography”, the best films of the year.

  • After Denmark last year, the Guest of honour country of this year’s festival is Italy, what aspect of this cinema would you like to highlight?

Yes, this year we are moving from the North to the South with our Country Focus. It is a pleasure to introduce the best of contemporary Italian cinema to the public of Les Arcs. Italian cinema, in spite of the economic and social crises, is till full of good surprises; comedies, political films, family drama, have still in common to put special emphasis on actors.

  • What can you reveal about your 2011 selection?

It’s hard to reveal anything about the selection yet by naming titles, the surprise must remain intact. However, what I can say for now is that I’ve been glad to discover this year, lively, funny, gripping and sometimes exhilarating European films that have no reason to be jealous of American productions, quite the opposite, in fact! French cinema being good this year, it will obviously be well represented.

Three Questions to…

After the success of the festival’s first two editions, the organizers review some of the key features of the 2010 edition and present the novelties of the 2011 edition of Les Arcs European Film Festival.

Pierre-Emmanuel Fleurantin, Guillaume Calop and Jérémy Zelnik,
General Director, General Manager and Professional Events Manager of Les Arcs European Film Festival

  • How did the second edition of Les Arcs European Film Festival turn out? What will you remember from 2010?

Extremely positive! 2009 has been a great launching, 2010 established Les Arcs European Film Festival as a successful event with the public and the professionals.
It is also a great communication success since we talked a lot about the festival in the press. You just need to remember this fantastic moment when Stéphane Bern, famous French commentator and his team braved the snowstorm to record their radio show “Le Fou du Roi”, nice and warm at Arcs 1950, with actress Virginie Efira, actor and humorist Elie Semoun and writer Philippe Djan, in front of more than 400 people: a moment never to be forgotten! This confirmed the idea that an intense week of cinema, ski, meetings and parties, in an outstanding environment is indeed a great idea to carry on!

  • What are you expecting from the 3rd edition?

Even more! More beautiful films, more previews, more stars, more snow, in a nutshell, even more pleasure! The programme is promising and we should see many cinema VIP, wearing out their brand new snow boots walking in the alleyways of Les Arcs. As for the professionals, we’ve already received a flood of projects and we are expecting more and more people to join us Les Arcs. With producers, salespersons, distributors, actors and directors, the European Cinema Ski Cup (a ski race organised between people working in the film industry) is very promising…

  • What can you reveal about the 2011 edition? What are the novelties of this year’s festival?

This year, we will start the week in a festive spirit: concerts and DJ sets on Les Arcs’ slopes, previews and parties will complete this crazy week! The Arc 2000 theatre will be equip with digital projection and will offer every day screenings of films from the programme. For professionals, there will be, in addition to the Coproduction Village, the School Village and the DIRE days, a new “Work in Progress” session during which extracts of films in post-production stage will be screened. Moreover, after Denmark in 2010 and Hungary in 2009, it’s Italy, which is, this year, the guest of honour country in Les Arcs, in order to have you discover and rediscover the masterpieces of renowned Italian directors of yesterday, today and tomorrow! Finally we’ve heard that the biggest SPA of the Alpes will open early in December in the Arc 1950 Village, ideal to chill out after an hard (or not?) day of meetings, skiing, cinema screenings, cocktails and cheese fondue!!

Three Questions to… (7/7)

He starred in Gouttes d’eau sur pierre brûlante by François Ozon, Les Temps qui changent by André Téchine was recently playing in Les Mystères de Lisbonne by Raoul Ruiz. Malik Zidi, 2009 juryman in Les Arcs, answers our three questions.

Malik Zidi
Actor

You were member of the jury at the 2009 Les Arcs European Film Festival. What would remember of this experiment?
It was a great experiment! It was a privilege for me to be at the festival’s first edition. Emulation was strong and a large number of people attended the festival. This shows that, throughout France, cultural initiatives have a salutary effect on regions, allowing them to “breathe”. Further, these initiaves lead people to meet and exchange.

You already shot European films and you will play in Raoul Ruiz’s next film. What is the preparation for a film mixing different European nationalities?
When acting in a foreign film, you realize how many diverse actors, ways of acting and ways to see the world do exist. Thus, acting in a foreign film is a great reward.

How would you define European cinema in three words?
Long live (European) cinema!