Interview with a filmmaker: “Mara Tamkovich” the director of the short movie “Live”

Interview with a filmmaker: “Mara Tamkovich” the director of the short movie “Live”

1.Tell us about your movie, where did the idea of this movie come from?

LIVE is inspired by the true story of Katerina Andreeva and Daria Chulcova, independent Belarusian journalists (TV Belsat), who covered protests after Belarusian presidential elections in 2020. I feel personally connected to it, because I used to be a journalist myself (among others, for TV Belsat) and my husband still works there. The events that day were so dramatic and full of tension, that it felt natural to try to transfer that power into a movie.

2.Tell us about yourself, your education, your experience. We would like to know you better.

I am a Polish based filmmaker of Belarusian origin. I came to film from journalism, having worked for such media as European Radio for Belarus and TV Belsat  – media that are trying to give Belarusians access to uncensored information. I studied journalism at University of Warsaw, film directing at Warsaw Film School and Wajda School. I guess that background determines what is important to me. Telling stories that bring change.

3.Has this film been previously appeared in any other festivals? If so, which festivals?

LIVE had its Polish Premier at the prestigious Polish Film Festival in Gdynia – the most important festival for fiction films in Poland. It was awarded with a special prize by MIRROR magazine.  Also it is scheduled to screen at 58 Chicago Film Festival in USA and Leeds International Film Festival in UK.

4.How have you discovered members of your team and how do you keep the relationship with them strong?

I met my producers at Wajda School. Filip Marczewski, creative producer, was my mentor at the director’s course I did at school. Kasia Kozłowska, the executive producer, is responsible for the producers course at Wajda School. DOP, Krzysztof Trela, is with me from the very beginning. We’ve met at Warsaw FIlm School our first year and have been working together since 2012. Some of the team came to this project with me from a TV series I’ve worked on. LIVE also gave me a chance to meet some awesome new people that were recruited for that project, such as Kasia Leśniak, the editor or Joanna Napieralska, sound genius. I definitely want to work with them in the future.

5.How do you usually get funding for your films?

I have directed four short films as a part of my studies at Warsaw Film School, with a very limited school budget. LIVE was produced by Wajda Studio as a result of a competition “15 minutes till premier”. Now I am seeking funding for my full feature debut and Polish Film Institute (a public institution dedicated to fund films, film events and film education) is a natural way to go.

6.How did you hear about Tehran Short Film Festival? How familiar are you with Iranian cinema?

My distribution manager, Justyna Han, is the one to thank for Your festival. She carefully selects the best events to submit the film to. As for Iranian cinema, I am far less familiar with it than I should be, but I really respect the work of Asghar Farhadi.

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