Intro Pere Portabella

To conceive a film, I always need to place myself in front of a blank sheet. It is the shortest road to the blank and empty screen, with the best conditions. In a way, it is like working directly on the screen itself.

It is simply a matter of letting a situation, a fortuitous event, a starting point, fall onto the blank page, black on white…a stain. A centre around which the story is then woven.

The initial ideas must be translated into images; they must be visualised. When you see them, you can distinguish the ones that suit you from the ones that do not. And feel the silence and the sounds, which are inseparable from the images as they settle on the empty space of the screen. The sharpest of all the scenes that pass before our eyes. It is like entering and leaving places as we delve further into them. Everything that takes place gradually materialises during the process before the film shoot: the process of ideas. The place they inhabit in the imaginary landscape around them is intimately tied in. Their very dialectic tells us what we should or should not do, limits the possible choices, hinders dispersion and channels the imagination, which reinforces the capacity for creativity. If not, it would be like working in a void. When filming, with the structured text-agenda, each shot resolves the previous one and serves to prepare the next. It is these and no others that must be filmed. Each shot should bear the cadence and the tone of the entire film, and there is no chance to record alternative or remedy shots. The imagined story has already been viewed before the film is shot. The space of the imagination is for inspiration what the viewpoint is for the gaze. Thus, the narrative structure finds its logic in questioning language, to adapt it to our own needs.

Without this process, before shooting, it is useless to hope to extract ideas from a natural scenario or a studio. Spaces or scenarios that are always expectant, awaiting the capacity for abstraction in the trespasser’s gaze. When you get to the cutting room, the continuity, the cadence and the tone are already there. You simply have to be careful when optimising the film materials, to adjust the shots to their assigned places and times. It’s that easy.