It’s July already, and this time we’re talking with Guillaume Caramelle, the writer and director of our Film of the Month winning entry for the June edition of our competition – ‘Nikki Marianne’.
JL – First of all, congratulations for winning this month’s Film of the Month award at TMFF! What a fantastic film ‘Nikki Marianne’ is – short and yet so full of meanings.
Guillaume – Thanks a lot! I’m proud and glad to be the June winner of your festival!
JL – What were the main sources of inspiration for your film?
Guillaume – When I was at high school, I didn’t know the primary rules of seduction and I had some trouble to find myself a girlfriend. Moreover, I looked younger than my age. Very younger! And girls used to get along with older boys! Well, I only wanted to create a funny story about this ironic situation.
JL – Did you start this project with a specific target audience in mind (especially in terms of age), or have you thought the whole thing in terms of the theme’s universality?
Guillaume – I didn’t target any precise public. Except if you consider I am my own public. I mean… I follow only one rule when I write, shoot or edit: do the movie I would like to watch. And I believe that if I have good taste, people will like it too. And according to the theme, the genre, the tone, the movie will naturally find a specific audience.
JL – ‘Nikki Marianne’ shines in almost every aspect – apart from the grand prize, your film also won our directing, screenwriting and cinematography awards, as well as the best actor of the month distinction. Did you find it difficult to assemble such a talented team?
Guillaume – I gathered this team when I did my first movie two years ago and I was glad to work again with all these talented people for the second time. I didn’t find it hard to assemble this team in the case of Nikki Marianne as everybody enjoyed working together the first time and was happy to make another movie all together.
JL – What was the biggest challenge with regards to the production of ‘Nikki Marianne’?
Guillaume – We had only three nights to shoot everything! So we had to capture 5 minutes per night with a lot of sophisticated shots. You can imagine how hard it was! When you don’t have enough money to do your film, the problem is not about the equipment you will or won’t have, it’s about the time you surely won’t have. Time is your enemy.
JL – How much does our worldview change within 10 years? Do we become wholly different persons, or is it all part of maturing and understanding the world around us?
Guillaume – It’s strange because we change a lot and meanwhile we remain the same. Some parts of us are amplified, our worldview is getting larger and we know what we can expect from ourselves, yet, our obsessions, our defaults are still present. We don’t become wholly different persons. We become better or worst compared with what we were. It depends on the path we take. But our profound nature will always define us at the end.
JL – How would you describe your first experience as a film director?
Guillaume – It’s like becoming God for a moment! First of all you dream about a story. Of course, it’s a long way which can be very suffering. Anyway, I remember it as an empowering experience. I realize that with a good team, a lot of work and a bit of luck, you can do the movie you always dreamt about.
JL – You have written, edited and directed ‘Au Souvenir d’Une Lune’ back in 2014. What was the most important thing that you learned from that experience and later implemented in ‘Nikki Marianne’?
Guillaume – Find as many answers as you can before shooting. Because when you’ll be on set, you will be overwhelmed and lose some part of your lucidity.
JL – What can we expect from you in the near future? Have you got any new projects lined up and ready to start work on?
Guillaume – Many projects, nothing sure! I would want to do another short movie this year and I’m working on a feature one.
JL – How can our readers stay tuned with all the stuff that’s happening with ‘Nikki Marianne’, as well as your own filmmaking activity?
JL – Thank you for your time! We wish you all the best in your future endeavours, and hope to enjoy your work again soon!
Guillaume – You guys do a great job. It’s very stimulating for an author to be considered like that. Keep on doing the way you do. Cheers!