Exclusive Interview with Cristiana Cerrini – Filmmaker
NY Glam: Tell us a little about yourself, growing up and your passions.
I had a happy childhood in one of the most beautiful cities in the world Florence, to which I am much attached. From an early age my father and my mother took me to the theater, to the cinema, I grew up in culture and art loving it. This led me to study it at school, I did humanistic studies and then I felt the need to do a job that would allow me to exploit my love for films. At the same time, the need arose to express myself in some way through this passion. I tried different roles, from direct audio recording, to works in production, but I realized that editing is the thing I liked most, being in this philosopher’s cave where I can create, so I devoted myself to editing and directing, and later when my career took off, I took back my love for writing, dedicating myself more heavily to this too.
NY Glam: Did you have any specific influences growing up that lead you towards the film industry?
I started watching movies very early as a child, even essay movies. My father was very young and he took me with him to the cinema. He was an intellectual and chose films with a great emotional depth and those of great or emerging filmmakers, so as a child I saw the first films of Wenders, Herzog, Scorsese, Truffaut, and the great Italian ones Visconti, Ferreri, Fellini, Germi, Rossellini, Antonioni. I realized very early on that this nurturing allowed me to have a natural talent for doing this job.
NY Glam: What are you currently working on?
I’m writing/editing two my own projects of documentaries that Lucia Manganaro Morelli is producing: the first one about creativity in Florence, Italy, since the eighties until today with a focus on female artists, the second one about Cinque Terre, Liguria, and the Gran Tour in the region.
NY Glam: What were your main responsibilities on this film?
(“Kemp and Barontini”) I directed, editing, and co-produced with Lucia Manganaro Morelli
NY Glam: Can you tell us about your experience in working with your team in this film?
(“Kemp and Barontini”) It was very intense and fast, with the maximum collaboration of the whole team. We also realized the importance of the moment, Lindsay Kemp had recently died and it was the end of the exhibition.
So it was very exciting to film Claudio Barontini by observing and touching the photos. Everyone on the team was aware of what it meant and we all worked to be able to capture the spleen of the moment.
NY Glam: What was the most important thing for this movie to achieve from a narrative and character standpoint?
The most important thing was to be able to tell the two characters through their works and tell the moment of the end together.
Not only the physical end of the exhibition, temporal, but also the end of an era, the death of the artist Kemp.
NY Glam: What makes a film interesting for you? What are three qualities that you look for in a movie?
The story, the actor *, the message. Storytelling is very important, as are acting and photography. A film must excite me, leave me a little more in my life, and above all make me forget where I am and catapult me into the story I am seeing.
This is the real task of art, cinema, literature, to create a shared memory and paths of growth and awareness for the human race. Of course, even pure entertainment movies are sometimes very popular with me.
NY Glam: What project helped you launch your career?
But there is not one in particular, also because I have never thought about my job in terms of career. I realized after doing it that I had one. I have always chosen and I choose my projects on the basis of a personal creative research that is combined with the desire to enrich my skills and to work with talented people who I believe are artistically valid.
NY Glam: What criteria do your team?
Passion for one’s work, tireless workers, culture, respect for the subjects dealt with, technical preparation and talent, ability in various fields, freedom of decision in one’s own field, ability to overcome the difficulties that arise from time to time.
Ability to enrich teamwork with one’s own contribution. I always try to work with the same people who are also my friends. And I myself am always willing to help my collaborators, to carry out their projects. Just today I was talking to a music artist dear and friend to me, Barbara De Dominicis about the possibility of working on the visual for her new musical project due out next spring.
NY Glam: What are you most proud of? Describe your biggest accomplishment to date?
My daughter Costanza
NY Glam: As a screenwriter, what is the most important aspect of building a character?
The verisimilitude, the coherence of the character with the environment in which he moves, the ability to represent universal values, a character in which everyone, regardless of age or sex, can recognize themselves.
NY Glam: Do you have any upcoming projects that you’re super excited about?
I’m editing two documentaries with director Pasquale Pozzessere and writing/editing two my own projects as author/director that Lucia Manganaro Morelli is producing: the first one about creativity in Florence, Italy, since the eighties until today with a focus on female artists, the second one about Cinque Terre, Liguria, and the Gran Tour in the region.
The project that certainly matters most to me, which Lucia Manganaro Morelli and I, after me, have been following for a couple of years, is the documentary on Florence: Rebels with a Talent. It is a constantly evolving work that represents for us not only a real time machine in our feelings and emotions but also a real tribute of love to a beautiful and very special city and also to all the artistic fauna that lived there and representing universal talent. A documentary which tells the story of a Florence unknown to most people, where in the world-famous museum city, another unusual and mysterious Florence is preserved, which shapes not only those who live there, but also those who decide to leave and inspire those who are only step by. Rebels with a Talent is a film about artistic experimentation as a impetuos force able to transmute every form of creativity into revo- lutionary values; the search for talent and self expression, beyond any capitalization.
The directives along which the film unfolds are: music, fashion, theater, cinema, locations, ar- chives. A journey through the imagination and memory with particular attention to the crea- tivity of women, the “bad girls”, which demon- strates how only thanks to those years is possi- ble a contact between the contemporary and the years of protest, whose ideology, now ap- pears always more like a spontaneous episode of the long century.
NY Glam: What advice would you give to someone who is aspiring to enter the film industry, especially as a film director?
For some years now I have been lucky enough to have young editing assistants, and in addition to preparing them technically I also try to give them advice on the working world What I always feel like telling them is to follow their own path and their own talent, in doing so they will be able to definitely live off their creativity and find satisfaction. This also applies to directing, with a further piece of advice which is to tell what is close and to dare to do so without fearing the opinions of critics or spectators.