Awarded the Golden Lion, currently presented in the autumn festivals (including that of Saint Jean de Luz which is held this week), “L’Evenement” by Audrey Diwan is one of the favorites to represent France at the Oscars. AlloCiné saw the film.
Today will be unveiled the list of the 5 finalists chosen to represent France at the Oscars. Titanium by Julia Ducournau (Palme d’Or at Cannes), Lost Illusions by Xavier Giannoli, Petite Maman by Céline Sciamma, Les Olympiades by Jacques Audiard, Aline by Valérie Lemercier and L’Evenement by Audrey Diwan are some of the most popular names. cities that can be found in this prestigious list, which concretely means that one of them could in fine find itself in Oscar contention for best foreign film.
Thanks to this news and because its Golden Lion recently obtained a strong expectation around the aptly named L’Evenement, AlloCiné offers you a spotlight on Audrey Diwan’s feature film. A film which is, moreover, currently touring the autumn festivals (Saint Jean de Luz this week, and Bordeaux next week), pending its release on November 24th.
On the occasion of the FIF in Saint Jean de Luz, Audrey Diwan gave us one of her very first French interviews *.
What is L’Evenement about?
The Event is adapted from a novel by Annie Ernaux, released in 2000. This autobiographical story relates a clandestine abortion in the 1960s.
The official synopsis of the film reads as follows: “I got pregnant like a poor girl. The story of Anne, a very young woman who decides to have an abortion in order to finish her studies and escape the social fate of her proletarian family The story of France in 1963, of a society which condemns the desire of women, and sex in general. A simple and hard story retracing the path of those who decide to act against the law. Anne has little time. in front of her, the exams are approaching, her belly is rounded … “
A powerful film, which marks first by the strength and importance of its subject. Audrey Diwan’s staging choices also contribute enormously to making this film resonate very strongly in everyone. The subject of clandestine abortion had never before been reported in this way in the cinema.
The film’s ambition is to get as close as possible to what his character is going through. As Audrey Diwan explains, the place of the body, the discovery of the body, occupy a very important place in this film. At our microphone, she explains her staging choices for the film.
“There are two fundamental dimensions for me, which are obviously the history of abortion, but also that of desire, she develops at our microphone. It is the portrait of a young woman, it is the portrait of this youth, and I wanted to invest these two fields and to do it in the most engaged, and the most powerful way possible.. “
I wanted the film to be like a kind of experience.
“The question I asked myself while reading Annie Ernaux’s book that really struck me was ‘how not to look at Anne, but to be her’. I wanted the film to be like a kind of experience. Immersion does not negate the gaze of the director, but I wanted two views to combine.
The way I look at this young girl is that you have the feeling of being this young girl who discovers her body. Because in all cases, whether in terms of abortion, when she goes underground, and in terms of sexual freedom, it is the story of a young girl who discovers her body.
It is the story of a young girl who discovers her body.
Afterwards with my team I looked for an adequate grammar, and it was fascinating as an exercise. Because first of all, the whole team had to work together, like a millimeter orchestra.
I don’t like to lock things up, I like that on the set there is a form of freedom of creation, and it is in her that I draw the envy. We were looking for a lot how to set up, repeating this choreography quite a bit.
The first thing was for the director of photography – Laurent Tangy – to find a common rhythm with the actress Anamaria Vartolomei, since it was necessary to forget the camera, therefore to find a way to move forward together, rhythm, which would almost come close to a dance exercise.
Together, the person who takes care of the focus had to work together, because when she turns her head, you put your eyes where she lays her eyes, so work on this feeling of entering into her life and into her body, it required playing all the senses at the same time.
I wanted us to be in this state, like that, in his head, with this noose that tightens.
We then did it to sound. When she turns her head, her attention lands in one place. She enters a moment of life that could be described as more paranoid since she never knows who can potentially help her. It is the principle of clandestinity that can confuse it. And so I wanted us to be in this state, like that, in his head, with this noose that tightens.
Speaking of cinematographic grammar, for me, the other very important dimension was the choice of the frame. With this 1:37 format, the more we advance in the story, the more it allows me to be behind the heroine’s back, to push open the doors with her, without ever knowing who is on the other side, and this that is going to happen. Because what I take away from this story is that it is woven of chance, and in fact, a young woman who goes underground never knows what will happen. In a square format, we do not see the characters arriving, but they appear in the field. I saw an idea emerge for the film that I liked with this choice. “
Audrey Diwan also has with us a still very current resonance of this film, although this story takes place in the 60s.
The permanence of the subject is inevitable.
“I had this feeling that when we work on the issue of abortion, there is always a place in the world where, unfortunately, we are talking about what is happening today. that in France, abortion is legal, we know very well that between the way we lay down a law and its application, there is always a margin, a sad margin, which means that women do not find where the to do so because they live in the most remote places. The preliminary investigation for the film made me say that in fact, the permanence of the subject is inevitable. “
The event will be released on November 24, 2021 in France. The film has also just found distributors (IFC Films & FilmNation) for the United States.
* Interview on Tuesday, October 5, 2021 at the Saint Jean de Luz International Film Festival. An interview to be discovered in full at the time of the film’s release, accompanied by an interview with the film’s main actress, Anamaria Vartolomei.