Cohn (“Official Competition”) says he is not convinced that the film with Ricardo Darín is competing for the Golden Lion. Photo Martín Bonetto
Inside important Argentine presence which is present this year at the Venice Film Festival (Ricardo Darin and Peter Lanzani hero Argentina, 1985by Santiago Miter, in the official competition; Sicilian Griselda in Bard, by González Iñárritu; ran out of Lucrezia Martello; Trenque Lauquénby Laura Citarella, in the Horizons section), the first to be confirmed was that of a member of the Jury, who will award the Golden Lion for Best Filmnothing less.
Forks Mariano Cohnwho has already had two films in competition as a director and another as a producer.
is Cohn’s first time speaking to the Argentine press since filming Whateverthe series with Louis Brandoni and Robert De Niro which he directed with his partner and friend, Gastón Duprat. It had been silent. And the Festival is already taking place in Venice. And, before he starts his official business, in this interview he talks about everything.
-When, on what date did they ask you if you wanted to be part of the Exhibition Jury? Who was? Was it for a phone call, a whatsapp, an email?
-I was shooting the series Whatever In Argentina, it was early April, and I received a phone call from Angela, the organizer of the Venice Film Festival, asking me if I was interested in being part of the Festival jury and if I was available for those dates.
As a mob, the first thing I asked was if they already knew who the rest of the jury was and they told me they had been confirmed so far Julianne Moore (the president) e Nobel laureate writer Kazuo Ishiguroand obviously he couldn’t say anything.
as you can imagine, I had no choice but to accept, then they sent me an official, very formal letter to the post office, and of course I kept it secret. I think that from that moment on I will have to receive at least 15 emails a week from the Festival with orders, commitments on the agenda, dinners and lunches, confirmations and reconfirmations … It looks like a presidential agenda.
-What are your best memories of the Show, where you have already competed on several occasions? Something in particular, an example, not how they treat you well …
-I have been to Venice three times, with the illustrious citizen, My masterpiece Y official competition. I really like the Festival, and I love the public, they are very sophisticated and have a good ironic load. We travel to many festivals, but really the cheers we got when we passed the illustrious citizen I will never forget it, it was impressive to be there, the minutes went by and they kept clapping.
Later, we found that this was not that common and that we had received the biggest applause in a long time, people at the Festival said. To cap off that evening, we went to dinner with Gastón (Duprat, the co-director) at the Danieli hotel with Mel Gibson, who had been to the screening and loved the film and wanted to meet the directors.
But, come to think of it, I think the best anecdote was when we went to lunch with Brandoni at Harry’s Bar Cipriani, after the screening of My masterpiece, and when the waiter came and asked “What are you eating?”, we ordered the whole menu! (literal). If you don’t believe me, I have photos documenting that moment.
-What did they tell you about what your daily task will be like, gala dinners, etc.? Do you know that the jury will decide the prizes on an island?
-The agenda in Venice is very intense. I thought it was great to go without the burden of submitting a movie, but from the beginning they told me it was triple the work, which would be very busy. To get started, in addition to all the activities, cocktails and meetings, you need to watch 2 or 3 movies a day, and it’s not worth watching them on the computer, you need to go to the cinema.
I have an email that I received with a 10 page Excel, day by day, hour by hour, with all the activities. I didn’t know about the island. Who says that an idea to write does not come from there Official competition 2No?
-You haven’t been a jury in any festival yet.
– Let’s say it’s my first foray into this new profession as a jury. I received several invitations to be part of a jury, and in general I had to turn them down because I was working, filming. In this case it coincided that the filming of Whatever and it was only in October that filming of the second season of The one in charge. So she coincided in space and time, and It is the most important festival in the world.
-That there is an Argentine film competing for the Golden Lion (“Argentina, 1985”), does it generate anxiety, stress, commitment?
-Not really. I never paid attention to the nationality of a film, I never cared about the director’s passport, or in which country it was made so that something I like or dislike.
-22 years after “Televisión Abierta”, at that time did you imagine this present? Jury in Venice, directed by De Niro …
-When with Gastón we invented the program open television, we were convinced that we would revolutionize television. I think there was no YouTube, Facebook, TikTok, Big BrotherNone of this. The revolution didn’t last long, no more than 6 months on the airbut everyone remembers.
I still think it’s great what people were doing on the show every time I watch it again. It was a place of maximum creation and highly democratic. Then my motivation and my artistic commitment were the same as when I was shooting with De Niro, or now with Venice as a judge. Perhaps it is precisely that degree of enthusiasm that allows me to go from one extreme to the other as if nothing had happened.
Work with De Niro
-What was the thing that attracted your attention the most in working with De Niro? No good vibes, how professional it is …
-Ok, I’ll answer you in a technical and specific way. He is an old school actor who reads and reviews books with very specific questions and suggestions. On the set, when it comes to acting, he does it in a hyper-realistic way, with a low, dry and raw tone of voice, very contemporary. I found that record, that construction, very sophisticated. He has a way of acting that is like he’s tuning in, every take.
Every take he takes beats the last one (This does not happen with all the actors, there are some who give their best in the first ones), it is a construction of very subtle and sober layers, which by accumulation makes it possible to reach the deeper meaning of the character and of being said. It was like seeing an acting class every take.
The tandem with Brandoni was spectacular, they are very fun scenes to watch, it is very exciting to see them act together. In the scenes they act in English, Spanish, Italian, they are two virtuosos. A couple of months ago we were at the TriBeCa Festival with Robert De Niro and He told us he was blown away by Beto’s performancewith the acting quality it has.
-It is said that they will make a film with De Niro. What is real?
I can’t say yes or no. Forget it, please, I’m getting into trouble.
-You have several projects underway, as a producer and as a director, many are series, like “El rey de los machos”, and the one you mentioned that you directed with Gastón, with Guillermo Francella.
-Our flagship projects, the ones we created and directed with Gastón Duprat for Star +, are The one in chargewhich will come out soon, e Whateverwith Brandoni and De Niro, currently being edited.
It is a very luxurious series from acting and staging, it touches the culinary theme and portrays the city of Buenos Aires as never seen in a series or film. The scripts were a lot of fun for the actors, we wrote them with Emanuel Diez. Seeing these two masters working together is very strong, it’s the best.
And finally, in early 2023 we will start shooting Fine Arts, in Spain. The books are by Andrés Duprat and the series is starring Oscar Martínez. For our part we are very proud to do series with the three best actors in Argentina, each in his own record. Beto, Guillermo, Oscar, with all of them we have already shot them in previous works and we repeat.
-And what’s the next project?
-We are finishing writing a screenplay with Andrés Duprat. In June of next year we will direct a film with Gastón in the United States, in New York …
-A wish for your stay in Venice?
– May the best man win!!! (laughs).
Paul O. Scholz