×
You will be redirected back to your article in seconds

‘Another Day of Life’ Directors on Cannes Special Screening

“Another Day of Life,” a much-awaited  animation/live action hybrid film, world-premiered on May 11 in a special screening at the Cannes Film Festival. In attendance were Alicija Mielczarek, the widow of correspondent and writer Ryszard Kapuściński, and their daughter Rene Maisner. Co-directed by Spaniard Raúl de la Fuente and Poland’s Damian Nenow, the film is based on events which inspired Kapuściński’s book chronicling his experiences during the 1975 Angola War, which established his literary reputation. “Another Day of Life” is lead-produced by Poland’s Platige Films and Spain’s Kanaki Films in co-production with Walking the Dog (Belgium), Hungary’s Puppetworks, and Wüste Film and Animationsfabrik (Germany).

“Another Day of Life” won the Producer of the Year Award at March’s Cartoon Movie, where 15 minutes of excerpts were screened in sneak preview. Indie Sales handles international sales rights.

Do you think Kapuściński’s wife and daughter recognized him in the animated character?

Nenow: I believe so. I had a long conversation with Rene and she said the most satisfying thing for us: “You’ve managed to catch the way of thinking of Ryszard Kapuściński.”

There’s another movie at Cannes – Anja Kofmel’s “Chris the Swiss” – which is also a documentary-animation hybrid. Do you believe this approach is building into a trend?

Nenow: Ours is not the first. I wouldn’t say “Another Day of Life” is a pioneer. But at the same time there are only a few. If there’s something new in our movie, it is that we’ve tried to show how powerful this multi-dimensional approach to a topic can be. We knew we wanted to go hybrid from the beginning. The first teaser we did in 2014 absolutely convinced us. This was a proof for us that there was something very powerful in the project.

What do you mean by this multi-dimensional power?

De la Fuente: We wanted to tell a real story, already written by Kapuściński, and based on true facts that we explored and double-checked. At the same time, we wanted to tell the story through animation, and a fiction component came into the project at that point. This took our movie to a level of fiction and a more personal and intimate universe. The animation allows us to fly and to enter into fantastic worlds. Sometimes it looks like an epic adventure movie. But the documentary footage brings us back to the truthfulness we always pursued. I can’t imagine “Another Day” without the documentary footage, because the original idea was always that: to mix them.

We know many people are now working on similar formulas. It’s hard work, you have to invest a lot of years and effort. It may be an interesting formula, but it’s not an easy or cheap one. It’s a hugely difficult adventure.

Can you drill down on the conception and development of this hybrid?

Nenow: As Rail mentioned, the very essence of our approach is the combination of the segments. This is not about choosing one line or another. The storytelling concept here is the combination itself. It’s not that you make a first part in one way and then the other in a different form, as happens, for example, in “The Congress.” Ours is a different case. Some other hybrids just use animation as illustration, as if a graphic simplification would be less hard to shoot. This is not our case. We built the story and spent three years designing it. Even the screenplay was developed thinking in a hybrid format.

It’s a crafted piece of cinema that is very imaginative, but closely inspired in reality at the same time….

De la Fuente: We have to remember that everything is inspired by reality. During our first trip to Angola, we shot the landscapes, characters, portraits, situations, roads… they were meant to inspire what the film was going to be. The main characters in live action were meant to be an inspiration for the animated ones. Other  inspirations were Kapuściński’s book, our conversations with real people. This is a very complex work with animation, melding fiction and reality, because we were trying to cross borders to create something new in a unique film. This is not a combination of two films. We think it’s very radical and very difficult to achieve.

How did you distribute the creative work?

Nenow: On an every-day basis. I remember working very hard in a very beautiful part of the Basque Country. It was one of the best experiences I’ve ever had. I remember very long sessions working, brainstorming with Raúl and fighting. But they also were the most beautiful fights I’ve ever had. That’s the creative process.

De la Fuente: Damian is a very wild director, me too. But we always came to an agreement. All the decisions were made 50/50 by the two of us. After that, we divided up the work.

More Film

  • 'Once Upon a Time in Hollywood':

    'Once Upon a Time in Hollywood': First Reactions Pour in From Cannes

    Reactions to Quentin Tarantino’s “Once Upon a Time in Hollywood,” which premiered Tuesday evening in Cannes, have started flooding Twitter, and critics are excited, to say the least. The movie, starring Brad Pitt, Leonardo DiCaprio and Margot Robbie, is set in 1969 Hollywood against the backdrop of the Manson murders. DiCaprio plays washed-up TV star [...]

  • AMMAN, JORDAN - MAY 13: Naomi

    After Hosting 'Aladdin' 'Star Wars' and 'Dune' Jordan Ups Production Rebates (EXCLUSIVE)

    Jordan is raising its cash back rebate for film and TV productions from 20% to 25% after recently hosting Disney’s ‘Aladdin,’ “Star Wars IX, The Rise of Skywalker,” and the Denis Villeneuve-directed “Dune” reboot. Concurrently, the kingdom, which provides one of the few stable environments for filmmaking in the Middle East, has reinstated the Jordan Film [...]

  • Benedict Cumberbatch stars in The Current

    Benedict Cumberbatch's 'Current War' Gets Awards-Season Release

    David Glasser’s 101 Studios is positioning the long-shelved and revamped “The Current War,” starring Benedict Cumberbatch and Michael Shannon, for an awards-season release in October. 101 Studios announced Tuesday that the film would open in limited release on Oct. 4, then go wide on the following weekend. The film presents the story of the “war [...]

  • Just Cause

    'Just Cause' Video Game Getting Movie Adaptation From 'John Wick' Writer

    “Just Cause” is the latest video game getting the movie treatment. Germany’s Constantin Film has acquired movie rights to the “Just Cause” video game franchise and hired “John Wick” creator Derek Kolstad to write the script. Constantin Film’s Robert Kulzer and Prime Universe Films’ Adrian Askarieh will produce the pic with Kolstad, who has written [...]

  • Cannes: Florence Pugh, Francois Civil Honored

    Florence Pugh, Francois Civil Honored With Chopard Award for Rising Talent

    Rising British actress Florence Pugh (“Lady Macbeth”) and French actor Francois Civil (“Wolf’s Call”) received the Chopard Trophy Award at a star-studded ceremony hosted by Chopard on Monday during the Cannes Film Festival. Pugh and Civil were chosen among many actors by a jury consisting of former Chopard Trophy recipients such as Marion Cotillard, Gael [...]

  • Belle Epoque

    Pathé Sells ‘La Belle Epoque’ to Half the World

    French sales, distribution and production company Pathé has closed a raft of sales deals on three titles at the Cannes Film Market: “La Belle Epoque,” “Misbehaviour” and project “Eifel.” The company will handle distribution in France and Switzerland on all three. Nicolas Bedos’ “La Belle Epoque,” which screened out of competition at the festival, is [...]

More From Our Brands

Access exclusive content