Producers on the Move 2013 – Slovakia
by Viktor Palák
- Mira Fornay quickly established herself after debuting in Venice with her film Foxes. With her second film, produced by Mirafox, she won in Rotterdam earlier this year
A director who likes to spend time with her characters (and screenplays), Mira Fornay debuted in Venice with Foxes and recently won in Rotterdam with My Dog Killer, a dark drama dealing not only with racism but also personal loneliness. However, producing her next feature is the company’s priority, but the small production company Mirafox would be very happy to support fellow filmmakers.
Cineuropa: Your second film My Dog Killer – of which you are a writer, director and producer – won in Rotterdam this year. How has this festival experience influenced your knowledge in each of these three fields?
Mira Fornay: It was a very important experience for me as an author to be in Rotterdam and no, I am not saying so because the filmwonthe Tiger Award. Rotterdam is a very good platform for meeting other filmmakers in an informal way and talking about movies and how to make independent auteur films these days. I found Rotterdam a very special place to be as a newcomer, because the film got just the right attention and was treated with respect and love. I think the mood of independent filmmaking was felt in all mentioned fields there and I enjoyed it a lot.
Would you say you feel more experienced as a producer or director?
I‘m a director first and foremost. I became a producer as it was the only way to get financial support for my films in my country of origin, because I wanted to do them my own way, with no compromises. My experience as a producer covers one feature film on which I worked with a much more experienced producer, Viktor Schwarcz, and other colleagues from my company – I am in Cannes in their name as well. I didn’t have a particular desire to become a producer, but it was necessary for the outcome of my films.
As mentioned, your production company Mirafox has up to now collaborated only on the films which you yourself directed. Are you being approached by other filmmakers asking for backing?
We’re small company which was established for production of my own films – this is certainly still the priority. If our production capacity and sources allow us, we’d be happy to help others with their projects. We’re definitely open for co-production partners with similar tastes and ways making films.
Your debut Foxes premiered in Venice and was afterwards presented at numerous festivals around the world. How helpful was having a debut in the line-up of such a prestigious event?
It was very important for building trust, especially with film funds in the countries in which I live now, Slovakia and the Czech Republic. I work differently, which might appear very risky at first sight. I’m happy we have gained their support, also due to premiering films in Venice and now in Rotterdam. Premieres at prestigious festivals like these are also very good for capturing the attention of sales and also of foreign productions. Killer has travelled since Rotterdam around the globe with the excellent care and support of M-appeal, our sales for My Dog Killer. Because of their hard work and help I can concentrate on my new work and get some rest without worries about our film’s future – I appreciate that a lot!
You will be participating in the Producers on the Move panel as a recent winner from Rotterdam, what expectations are you heading to Cannes with?
I don’t have any specific expectations. I am sure that I will meet nice, interesting people and discussing with them about how to make films in these days in Europe will certainly be a positive experience. I’m looking forward to it!
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