HOW DID YOU BECOME INTERESTED IN MAKING FILMS?
When I was 10, my dad took me to the theatre to watch Terminator 2. The film was such an aesthetic hoc that it haunted me for weeks. Since then, I wanted to understand how everything worked, to understand every step of the film-making process.
I really became passionate about cinema. Then I spent my teenage years watching genre films, with a special interest for 70’s and 80’s American cinema. I was not so bad at drawing, so I began graphic arts studies, with the idea that one day, I would make films.
After a few years spent in graphic design, I wrote two short horror films: Zombinladen and The nails.
WHAT’S YOUR MOVIE ABOUT?
Well…I like to describe it as a road movie with a chicken as sidekick, and a love story with a dead body.
WHAT KIND OF MOVIE WILL IT BE?
In fact I’d like it to be at the crossroads of several genres. It’s not only a road movie, but also a scary movie, and a fairy tale at the same time, like an adult version of The Wizard of Oz.
And it’s all about a girl. She has her bad boyfriend, Jack, dead in the trunk of her car. And she’s driving to meet her good ex boyfriend George in Seattle. But he doesn’t know she’s coming actually. She is having a very rough time, and Hurricane Katrina is at her heels. Her mind is progressively decomposing, just as Jack’s body. It’s a story wrote by an author called Jason Eric Miller. And when I read it, it felt obvious that I had to make a film out of it.
WHO IS “HER”?
She’s a girl who has to learn how to love herself in order to move on. She has made bad choices and goes through a difficult time. She does not seem to learn from her mistakes fast enough, and that makes her deeply human.
She is a princess without any prince charming. A princess who had to kill the dragon herself, a Dorothy lost on the yellow road…with a hen as only companion.
I want the people to feel like they were in this girl’s mind.
COULD YOU TELL US MORE ABOUT THIS MAIN CHARACTER?
All the ambition of this movie is to make the main character likeable. The audience has to be in empathy with HER even if she has done bad things.
I don’t want to make a punitive movie. It’s very important for me that people love her even if they don’t understand her.
WHO ARE THE STRONG FEMALE CHARACTERS THAT YOU PARTICULARLY REMEMBER?
Barbara Loden’s Wanda or Alice doesn’t live here anymore or Nina Sayers in Black Swan. But I think that we don’t see enough movies with a woman in a strong and beautiful lead role.
WHAT ARE YOUR INFLUENCES?
What we could call my “triangle” of influence is Terrence Malick, David Lynch and David Cronenberg. And I feel that this film could be at the centre of this triangle. I’m not saying I could make a movie as good as these three guys, (Laughs) but I feel there’s a sort of virgin territory at the crossroads of these influences.
The movies that I deeply love are real experiences: something intense and strong for the audience. So with Decomposition, I want to make a disturbing and ambiguous film.
SO YOU LIKE TO PLAY WITH THE VIEWER’S NERVES?
(Laughs) Yeah I really love movies in which you’re not sure of what you have to feel. What is appropriate to feel or not. When you say to yourself: “This is disgusting, right ? So, why am I laughing?” And when you start to worry about your own emotions. That’s precisely when it becomes interesting.
THE MOVIE SEEMS TO GO FROM BAD TO WORSE, DOESN’T IT?
It does! And I want it to be riddled by the main character’s madness. A fantasmatic film, happening in a fantasy America, created by cinema. I want to set the viewer in the road-movie codes, in some kind of comfort zone actually. And then, throughout the movie, to start distorting this comfort zone, distorting it until you feel very uneasy. You don’t know how far the film will go.
ONE LAST WORD?
I want Decomposition to become a sensory and organic experience, a weeping film, absurd, funny and obscene, a horror film and a love film at the same time. And especialy, a film that is racing on the road, until it is entirely set up on fire.