We had you presented Gay Amandine in 2015: the former actor and basketball player, LGBT activist and African-feminist, went behind the camera to direct and produce itself the voice Open. This feature-length documentary on the black African descendants in France and Belgium invites the latter to tell her through testimonies and artistic performances.
“It is above all a film that gives the opportunity to those who are usually told or silencées, to tell and to be in charge of their representation on the screen. It’s also a film that follows a double movement : -The one highlight our common experience of a minority within the former colonial powers which we are issues-, recalling the heterogeneity and diversity of Afro-descendant communities “while the film’s fundraising campaign swing. right on the Kickstarter platform, where a first target of 12 000 euros has already been reached, Amandine Gay answered our questions.
How the idea of making this documentary did you come?
I think that as many members of minority groups in France -Afro-descendant.es, Asian, people with disabilities, trans or intersex people, etc.- I am never recognized me in French or French-speaking audiovisual productions . So I decided it was time to make the movie that I liked to see, as suggested by Toni Morrison . In addressing a non-fictional perspective a subject I know from the inside, namely being a black woman, I had the feeling to return to power on a narrative that escapes us.
That is to say?
When I was an actress, was asked to “do the accent,” the majority of the characters they offered me were called Aminata or Fatou and were of sordid stories center. When I switched to writing fiction, I was told that I was creating characters-for example a lesbian Noire-sommelier and was too “American” and that these girls did not exist in France. Open Voice it is a way of saying, “you do not see us, not because we do not exist, but because you are ignorant.es and we no longer need you to exist.”
Which are interveners in the documentary, how have you chosen?
The interveners are above all people I knew: women from the arts world, women with whom I studied, friends of friends. And then, a broader recruitment was possible thanks to the social networks: Twitter first, but also blogs like Black Women Talk or who have relayed my calls to participants.
Why did you choose to finance through crowdfunding?
Because I have not had too much choice! Seriously, from the time when I did not get funding from the CNC, I opted for the self-production.Today I work for 2 and a half years on this project with producer positions, director, editor, distributor and responsible for comm ‘with my co-producer, op chief editor, who is also my partner. We may be effective and at the top of multitasking, at some point, crates and energy are emptied. On the other hand, for the last part of the film that is also the most technical, post-production, we can not do it with us because we have neither the skills nor the equipment to test the film conditions’ room cinema”. We reached the landing “Financing post-production” in 10 days, this was unexpected, indicating that the film has already found its audience! Now we hope to pass the level that will allow us to return to our cost.
What is the movie today?
The film is complete, mounted and on the way to the post! We even have a date for the premiere, it will be on 8 December and venue will be disclosed in mid-November! Moreover, it is already programmed in the Paris region and Switzerland in December in Germany in January, in February in Canada and the United States in the Spring. As the film is not out yet, it’s a good sign. The goal now is to find a real distribution.
Can a documentary change things? Do you have examples of films that have significantly advanced the mentality, whatever the subject?
I have no examples that come to mind but I think it’s good to be modest. As the name of the film suggests, the ambition is to reinvent the wheel less than launching lines of thought and free speech. My biggest accomplishment would be that of Afro-descendant youth and youth who are seen nowhere usually say: “I too have a story to tell!” And that they make their film, emission radio, zine, etc. That would really be a good result.
Interview by Faustine Kopiejwski
Source: Cheek Magazine