We speak to Hannah Besirevic – a young filmmaker who directed Where we are, one of the episodes of this year’s Papaya Original Series.
You were born in Bosnia and Herzegovina, grew up in Norway, and later lived in Paris. How has such cultural diversity affected your work?
A lot! I started travelling at the age of six and since then I’ve been on the move constantly. It made me understand that home is an idea rather than an actual place.
Your Papaya Films Original Series episode is inspired by road movies. Where did this idea come from?
The idea came from an actual road trip I took with my boyfriend and his mom. Mela’s character is inspired by her and the Alzheimer's she’s suffering from. I had never met or spent time with a person that had memory loss before and it was truly fascinating. During the trip, I thought that these experiences could really become a great film.
In Where are we there are many different, exotic locations. Where was the movie shot?
The movie was filmed in Mexico City and on the coastline of Oaxaca – one of the most beautiful states of Mexico.
What were the biggest challenges you faced while making this film?
Filming in a car with a small budget was interrelated with potential delays. We had some problems with the car itself, the equipment did not always work as it should and it was difficult to record the sound. However, the biggest challenge for me was to understand what does it mean to direct a narrative. It was my first time as a director and I learned more than I could have ever imagined.
What is your source of inspiration?
Life. It never stops to inspire me.
- Felix Umarov | The art of directing Papaya Films Original Series
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