Swim Little Fish Swim - Interview with Directors Ruben Amar & Lola Bessis

An interview with directors Ruben Amar and Lola Bessis on the occasion of the US release of their film Swim Little Fish Swim.

What made you want to pick New York/ Brooklyn as the frame for your movie, seeing as the challenges faced by your characters could be described as universal?

The idea comes from a filmed diary that we started together in New York. We found all the situations crazy, and we ran into lots of atypical anecdotes on our way. Naturally, we collected the images from New York. Some little elements from daily life seemed absurd, other stuff trivial, but we were amazed. It was like small scenes, and we wanted to include them in a movie. We didn’t use everything but the idea originally came from this will to do a feature movie by seizing New York, before we even wrote the script. And then we said « we need to do this movie, we only have 5 more months ahead of us! ». And we bought a canon 7D camera…

How did you work with an American cast except Lilas /Lola Bessis? Did you notice a different approach in the acting of the Americans? How did you adapt to the cultural differences?

There were a lot of obstacles and disagreements. People were very low paid, so sometimes they accepted other opportunities – which is totally understandable - and the climate was rather tense. We wanted to do a real movie, every hour mattered and we needed to take advantage of everything. In contrast, the team thought that the climate would look like a summer camp, and indeed it was not because all our savings were at stake. However, we met very talented people with whom we wanted to collaborate in the future...read more on Frenchculture.org

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