INTERVIEW WITH Alexandra Savu
How long have you been doing movies? How did you decide to start making movies?
I have been making movies ever since I discovered there was a way for me to get experience in this industry with minimum equipment and knowledge. I started as a kid, analyzing films, reading books, playing around with cameras etc. Then, I enrolled in several types of film and theater courses during middle school, until my passion became more of a plan than an ideal. Finally, I went to film school in the US, where I advanced my career by starting to work in the film industry and getting to direct, edit, write, and produce several award-winning short films.
Why did you do this project?
I made Rescuers because I wanted to show the extent to which people’s minds get blurred and altered by the thirst for money. Financial insecurity is one of the most overwhelming struggles humanity is facing, and the many way it manifests itself has always surprised me. Most notably, people who do not have an advanced training in the mafia, gangsters, so the opposite of the James Bond stereotype, have creative ways of dealing with the lack of money. Therefore, I was in a time of my life where I felt it necessary for me to express these outbursts the less well-ff people experience to fix these issues.
How long did it take from the initial idea to being able to release?
It took about 6 months from the conceptualizing of the script to the final cut of the postproduction process.
Are you happy with the result?
Very. I know there are many ways the film could have been improved, especially during pre-production, as we know films are made during pre, but for the stage of my career I was in when it released, I am very proud with the result. I believe the actors are happy as well with their performances, as it was not an easy script to follow or dialogue to have.
What phase is this project in right now? Are you in the initial phase of sending it to festivals, middle phase or finishing the circuit?
We are currently finishing up the festival circuit, as the film has obtained several awards internationally so far.
How has your experience been with the festivals so far? Where do you think they should improve?
Applying to festivals is always exciting and a learning curve regarding the packaging, submissions, and interactions with the jury. I think we should improve in the way we do our selection process and the way we seek specific criteria for the fields we exceled most in our film, such as the postproduction process, most notably the editing.
Normally, filmmakers use many references, favorite directors, favorite movies, etc. Were you inspired by any director or film? If so, tell us your references.
I was inspired by the editing style Arthur Schmidt, the editor who cut Forrest Gump, another film I adore, and Michael Khan’s style, the editor who did Schindler’s List.
Your favorite movie?
Leon the Professional (Luc Besson), Heat (Michael Mann) or Anna (Luc Besson), but there are so many, it’s really hard to pick.
Fleabag (Phoebe Waller-Bridge) or How I Met Your Mother (Carter Bays). It’s really hard to find good comedy, but some of it really grips me and gives me so much to think about and learn from it.
Do you see yourself making movies in 5 years? Where do you see yourself?
I see myself living on film sets in the weekend, doing directing and cinematography for independent, meaningful art-pieces/films, and editing short-form content during the week at a stable job. I have a huge passion and extensive experience in postproduction, and I want to continue editing and developing myself as a human through editing.
Do you have any other project in mind?
Yes, at the moment, I am editing a documentary as a freelance editor. It’s called Baseball Without Borders and it’s about the nonprofit organization that sends baseball equipment across the world to unprivileged children. It’s really exciting and I love working with the footage for such an intense project.
What do you ask of 2024 cinematographically speaking?
I ask of more diversity in terms of cinematography and content ideas, maybe even more controversial topics approached in conventional ways. I love the cinematographic styles present in the American film industry and I believe they should be incorporated more often in the movies made here.
Your best experience in a movie theater?
I love when people start to experience in sync the emotions expressed by the film. The whole room seems to live at the same time, as if nothing outside of the movie theater matters and the world stops spinning for the duration of the movie. We think and feel the same things for a short period of time, and our minds wander in the same directions.