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Berlin Facetime: Director Pascal Plante of ‘Fake Tattoos’

Pascal Plante’s heartfelt and edgy feature debut “Fake Tattoos” makes its European premiere at the Berlin Film Festival, after winning Best Canadian Film at the 2017 Montreal Festival du Nouveau Cinema and unspooling in Slamdance. The intimate narrative pivots on Theo (Anthony Therrien), an 18 year old who celebrates his birthday alone at a wild punk rock show. His life changes when he meets Mag (Rose-Marie Perreault), and as romantic sparks fly, must decide what his uncertain future holds.

Where did the idea for “Fake Tattoos” come from?

I’ve always loved romantic films but it’s a genre with a certain recipe, so I wanted to bring my own sensibilities to the table.  I enjoy character-driven stories with a looser narrative, where it’s a bit undisciplined but as a result you’re learning something about people. “Fake Tattoos” was born out of the films that I love, but which I wasn’t getting enough of a chance to recently see.

Your lead actors gave remarkable performances. Do you enjoy casting?

I love the casting process, and in a film like this, strong chemistry was extremely important to have between our leads. We saw about 15 actors before we cast Anthony, and we saw many more girls before we landed on Rose-Marie, who just had this magic about her. And you believe them as a couple.

Why did you and cinematographer, Vincent Allard, choose the 1.66:1 aspect ratio?

You’re the first person to ask about this! We shot in Super 16, and I’ve always been intrigued with 1.66:1 because of the level of intimacy and depth that it affords within the composition. We used many two-shots and there was an extra sense of verticality in each instance.

Who are some of your cinematic inspirations?

John Cassavetes, Cristian Mungiu, Richard Linklater, and of course, Xavier Dolan did so much in the 2010s for Canadian filmmakers. Long-take cinema is extremely stimulating for me.

What are you working on now?

I’m writing a feature which centers on a swimmer going through an existential crisis at the Olympic Games. It will show the excessive, backstage antics that occur during the event, and it’s a more logistically ambitious piece, so it needs the proper amount of time. The sports movie is another genre I love so I’m hoping to do something with a new twist.

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