Participating in the event with ‘A Jar of Nuts’, Savvas Stavrou from Cyprus said, “My film is based on a book by the Greek author Anthony Samarakis. I read the story when I was fourteen and I fell in love with it from then on. The film is inspired by the cinematic atmosphere of French director Jean-Pierre Joune.”
He also explained that the atmosphere of ‘A Jar of Nuts’ is a bit sad while it is fun and it is closely related to the world we live in today, where people are forced to stay in their homes due to the social distancing. “I hope the audience enjoys watching this movie,” he added.
Competing with the short documentary ‘Arctic’, Khizuz Marie Lazcano and Josu Venero from Spain expressed hope that they could watch their film along with other people at the festival in Tehran. “But in any case, we are very happy with this choice and that our film will be screened alongside other films,” they added.
The young filmmakers continued, “The idea of this film was formed very simply in our minds; How we can better understand and relate to the landscapes and geography of our environment. What are the sights of the Arctic and what are the sights that exist in our country or cities. The idea of this film is about a deeper understanding and the latent sense that these scenes have in themselves. In short, we tried to look at this issue from a scientific, purely artistic and emotional point of view, so that we could reach the understanding; because scenes are not the only things we see and they have a whole lot of story behind them, and this short film tries to discover and illustrate these untold stories using artistic and creative mental tools.”
Director of ‘Before the Storm’, Chen Yuan from China said, “The story is taken from my childhood memories, in which I tried to share it with my audience in the language of cinema. In this film, the main character of the story seeks refuge, not only from the storm that is happening in the real world; rather, it is from the storm that breaks his heart. The struggles that the main character is involved in are very personal and at the same time, very global and we are all involved in it in different ways.”
“The filmmakers are all from the younger generation of Chinese filmmakers, and we're trying to bring you another experience of Chinese cinema. So please watch our movie and I hope you enjoy it,” he added.
Director of the ‘The Best Orchestra in the World’, Henning Backhaus from Austria said, “I was a student of Michael Hanke, a well-known Austrian-French director, and I have learned important things from him.”
Director of ‘Distances’, Susan Béjar from Spain said, “It's a great honor for me and the crew of this film for participating in this festival. This story is able to break boundaries and has been able to connect with audiences from different cultures around the world. It is very encouraging for us. The film has a captivating story; a story that has a simple beginning and the viewer thinks that it takes him to a pleasant point and where he does not expect it at all, he realizes that the train is moving in another direction.”
“Some people think that this film tries to show the social problems of the mentally-ill persons, but what I was trying to show was that in such situations, when you replace love in your life, you can change everything. I hope you enjoy watching this movie and I also hope that we have the chance to watch this movie together one day after the end of the coronavirus epidemic,” she added.
Director of ‘Leave of Absence’, Anton Sazonov from Russia said, “I'm very sorry that I have not the chance to come to Iran and watch the film besides you, but I wanted to thank you and I hope you enjoy watching the film.”
Director of the animated short film ‘Metro’, Valentin Titrov from Russia said, “I have studied filmmaking at Grasmov University of the Arts. My film is about a bird that flies between the underground palaces of Moscow. I hope you enjoy watching it.”
Director the animated short film ‘Reasons’, Simon Roczynski from Poland said, “I am very happy to be able to introduce the film ‘Reasons’ to you. This is my first film at Woolge Film School. ‘Reason’ narrates the life of a mother and her child, in the 21st century, who are dealing with an old woman who has been accused of witchcraft by the people of the same city.”
The 37th TISFF was held in physical and online formats at cinema hall of Iran Mall on January 20-25.
The selection committee of the 37th edition of the event selected 56 works out of 4,987 submitted films.
The selected titles were comprised of 30 short films, 16 animated short films, eight short documentaries, and two experimental shorts.
The selected short films were from France, Poland, Spain, Russia, China, Italy, Austria, the US, Czechia, Belarus, Serbia, Macedonia, Cyprus, Ghana, Bulgaria, Turkey, South Korea, Belgium and Canada, among others.
Organized by the Iranian Youth Cinema Society (IYCS), the TISFF is held annually in the Iranian capital city of Tehran to provide an opportunity for young filmmakers to exchange their experiences.