On directing > Every shot should have a purpose | Chantal Akerman, 1950 -2015

Je Tu Il Elle I You He She1974
Je Tu Il Elle I You He She1974

Chantal Akerman – Je Tu Il Elle (I, You, He, She),1974

“I was not interested by cinema when I was young.”

“Every shot should have a purpose, every frame should contribute to the overall narrative.”

“What I hate in movies is all those people you need. And then I realize I do better when I shoot by myself.”

“There is beauty in simplicity, in the everyday moments that we often take for granted.”

Jeanne Dielman 23 quai du Commerce 1080 Bruxelles .1975
Jeanne Dielman 23 quai du Commerce 1080 Bruxelles .1975 b

Chantal Akerman -Jeanne Dielman, 23, quai du commerce, 1080 Bruxelles (1975)

“When I’m in my neighborhood, I don’t see anything anymore, because I’m so used to it. When I go somewhere else, suddenly, I’m alive. I’m on alert, and I can be fresh.”

“I am interested in exploring themes of displacement and belonging, of what it means to exist in an ever-changing world.”

“The rhythm of editing is crucial, as it sets the pace and tone of the film.”

News from Home 1976
News from Home 1976 b

Chantal Akerman, News from Home (1976)

“The camera can capture raw emotions, allowing the audience to connect with the characters on a deeper level.”

“My mother arrived in Brussels in 1938 from a small town near Krakow. But strangely enough, in 1942 or 1943, she was taken back to Auschwitz, which was just 30 miles from where she grew up. Her parents died there and a lot of her family.”

“I realized that my mother was at the center of my work, because now that my mother is no longer there, there’s nobody left.”

Les rendez vous dAnna 1978
Les rendez vous dAnna 1978 b

Chantal Akerman, Les Rendez-vous d’Anna, 1978

“I am interested in making films that reflect the life and experiences of women.”

“I am fascinated by the concept of identity and how it shapes our experiences and interactions.”

“Delphine Seyrig is a very proper woman, from high society. She’s from the Ferdinand de Saussure family, the structuralist. Old money. Swiss. Protestant. They were that type of well-educated people who could recognize a good artist before others, and she was like that. Even if it was against something inside her. Tell me one actress in 1972 in France, except Delphine, at her level, who would love Hôtel Monterey. No one.”

Hotel Monterey 1973
Hotel Monterey 1973 b

Chantal Akerman, Hotel Monterey (1973)

“I believe in the power of silence, the moments where nothing is said but everything is felt.”

“When people are enjoying a film they say “I didn’t see the time go by”… but I think that when time flies and you don’t see time passing by you are robbed of an hour and a half or two hours of your life. Because all you have in life is time. With my films you’re aware of every second passing through your body.”

La captive 2000
La captive 2000 b

Chantal Akerman, The Captive (2000)

“I believe in the power of long takes, allowing the audience to truly immerse themselves in the story.”

“I never thought of myself as an odd one or different in any way…I just had a way, a way that was mine and mine alone. A way that was maybe a bit peculiar, but I liked that. I liked the fact that other people weren’t odd in the same way… I felt that being odd suited me… My oddness had a certain something, I thought. A style. A style that belonged to me. Then it became a habit and I no longer thought about my odd style, that was how I was and that was that.”

“I grew up reading Proust all my life, and he’s very dear to me.”

Chantal Akerman, 1950 -2015

Almayers Folly 2011
Almayers Folly 2011 b

Chantal Akerman, Almayer’s Folly (2011)

Hotel Monterey, 1972 documentary / Je Tu Il Elle (I, You, He, She), 1974 / Jeanne Dielman, 23 quai du Commerce, 1080 Bruxelles, 1975 / News from Home, 1976 / Les rendez-vous d’Anna (Meetings with Anna), 1978 / La captive (The Captive), 2000 / La folie Almayer (Almayer’s Folly), 2011

Chantal Akerman

Chantal Akerman

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