LIMA – Peruvian helmer-scribe Enrica Perez, whose lauded feature debut “Climas” won her the Best Peruvian Film award at the 2014 Lima Film Festival among a string of international prizes, is developing her next pic “Sobre el Acantilado.” (“On Top of the Cliff”).
Just as “Climas” explored the world of three women albeit in different parts of Peru – the Amazon, Lima and the Andes mountains – “Acantilado” tracks the inner lives of female teens in 1940s’ Lima while living in a boarding school run by nuns.
But Perez hasn’t always dealt with femme issues. Her first short, “Taxista,” was a 2007 adaptation of a short story based on Robert de Niro’s character in “Taxi Driver.” “It’s quite a masculine story; a thriller,” she noted. The short won her quick recognition in Peru and New York, including the Adrienne Shelly Award for best female director and the Someone to Watch award from CineWomen, NY.
After securing a Master’s degree in film directing from Columbia U, she was later accepted at the prestigious La Femis film school in Paris where she made her next short, “De Mon Cote” (“By My Side”), which revolves around an incarcerated woman whose visiting daughter tells her not to contact her once she finishes her 10-year sentence.
“It was only while making “Climas” that I truly grew more interested in exploring the world of women who are so much more complex,” she said. Meanwhile “Climas” was released on DVD this year in Peru, where it will likely be most available at the renowned DVD stalls of Lima’s sprawling Polvos Azules black market, where film-savvy bootleggers have legitimized their biz for Peruvian pics, at least, by offering filmmakers as much as $5,000 for local DVD sales rights. Such is the symbiotic relationship between local filmmakers and the vendors that many directors visit the stands to autograph DVD copies of their pics.
Just as with “Climas,” which took some seven years from script to screen, it might be a long wait before “Cliff” hits theaters. “It will take me some time to research, secure the financing and co-producers,” Perez said, although she hopes to start shooting by 2018. Most importantly, her most meaningful project, her first baby with Romanian director-husband Florin Serban, is due in December.