Q&A: PEDRO TAVARES

Bang Bang, 1971, Andrea Tonacci

As a way of introducing you to some amazing people working in the fields of artist moving image, experimental film and alternative cinema, we have concocted a short questionnaire. Today we speak to Pedro Tavares, filmmaker and director of Festival ECRÃ.

1. Who are you and what do you do?

Hello everybody, my name is Pedro Tavares and I am a filmmaker and also curator and director of Festival ECRÃ, which runs in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil. My last film was the feature Escuro Horizonte (Dark Horizon) which will be available on Tao Films very soon. Regarding Festival ECRÃ, we are on the third edition and this year we have the honour to screen films directed by James Benning, Bruce LaBruce, Júlio Bressane, Heinz Emigholz, Lee Anne Schmitt, Paul Grivas and of course, Daniel Fawcett & Clara Pais, among others.

2. What was the first film you remember seeing as a child?

My first memory of “seeing” a film was a Trapalhões movie. Trapalhões was a TV show destined for children during the ’80s that nowadays probably would be R-rated. I was 3 and was very scared ‘cause the sound of the film was very loud. My mom always rented films on VHS and I remember watching The Color Purple and Pulp Fiction with her. She is also responsible for what I call my “first cinema experience” that was watching Kids by Larry Clark in a cinema. I was 12 years old and freaked out.

3. What was the last film you watched and what did you think of it?

The last movie I’ve watched was Richard Linklater’s It’s impossible to learn to plow by reading books. It sounds like his version of Chantal’s News from Home. Basically a movie about moving around and relating it to the environment.

4. How did you become interested in working with cinema/moving image?

In the ’90s I was that cinema geek that every friday was looking for new releases while also watching classics on TV. After that I decided to study journalism to be a film critic but I ended up at a film school making low-budget films as assistant producer. But I’ve always written about films, even to myself, that’s why I still edit the film magazine called Multiplot. Then I started working in film festivals as content producer and programming assistant ‘till I got promoted to be a curator. After I bought a decent cellphone I decided to make some experiments. My first short film is called Spikes Protocol and was released in 2017. It was selected to 40 film festivals around the globe and made me think of producing a new film. Then I made with my pal Gabriel Papaléo the short Permanent Vacation. I’ve also made a short called Kurt Everywhere and then, my first feature, Dark Horizon.

5. Tell us about a film that has had a profound effect on you?

Probably not an emotional impact but definitely made me think that I can make films with no budget, that was Bang Bang by Andrea Tonacci. I totally recommend it and it’s still one of my favourite films of all time.

6. Favourite books about cinema/moving-image/filmmaking?

La Rampe by Serge Daney, What is Cinema? by André Bazin and True Confessions of a Radical Filmmaker by Alex Cox.

7. What would be your dream double-bill, two films you’d love to see together on the big screen?

Tokyo Drifter by Seijun Suzuki and Miami Vice by Michael Mann.

8. Which filmmaker/artist are you most obsessed with, the one whose work you return to again and again?

It will probably sound very strange ‘cause people will expect something like John Ford, Hawks or Antonioni but one director that I’m always looking forward to watch is Alex Cox. He was banned in Hollywood and started to make independent films during the ’90s and still runs through ways to make films using creativity and low-budget.

9. What are you currently working on/what projects do you have coming up?

There’s a new issue of Multiplot magazine coming out this month and right now I’m working on this year’s Ecrã edition. As soon as this edition’s over I will start working on my new feature called Catarina. The plan is to get it done by early 2020.

Find out more:

Multiplot – www.multiplotcinema.com.br

Festival ECRÃ – www.festivalecra.com.br