‘BLACKOUT’ – DIRECTED/WRITTEN BY ALEXAN SARIKAMICHIAN
Filmmaker and artist Alexan Sarikamichian and is back with a brand new short film titled ‘BLACKOUT’! The loss of a love can sink you until you reach unknown places of pain. Blackout is the moment when the world stops and you find yourself in your deepest thoughts. Starring Franco Velastiqui & Delfina Pía Rey & Nikka, editor Daniela Benedetti, original music Joaquin Bartolomé Otero Sojo, art director: Johy Turek & Belén Stratta and more supported by Universe Management.
We got the chance to interview the filmmakers and get the thinking and ideas behind BLACKOUT:
Let’s talk BLACKOUT, what was the trigger to tell the story?
As a director I was making videos of romantic relationships but much more soft or naive, I wanted to show a darker, anguishing side, and get into the head of one of the characters.
I tried to show the suffering and pain that can give you a relationship or a loss. I wanted to do something different from what was already visible about me, something that wouldn’t be so happy.
While the short shows in memory way the stage of falling in love of the couple, where everything is beautiful, what it emphasizes the most is what happens to the character when he is alone, drowning, lacking love , and how he tries to take refuge in situations or things that perhaps do not do well and end up ruining it.
What was it like to work with the cast to tell the story?
I wanted to tell a story as cinematic as possible and it had to be very realistic as well, so I called Franco and Delfina Rey, who are a couple in real life, that was incredible, because I needed to tell about love from the way they look at each other, the way they trust each other. There is a lot of passion among them, and a lot of everyday life.
The actors are my movies. Then there is the character of Nikka who comes to replace Delfi, and I wanted to look for someone similar. She comes to represent a lot of new things for him, and it’s kind of Amélie, I think her beauty and looks are unique.
In what aesthetic references were inspired?
The actors were my great inspiration. The short film was born from my desire to film with Franco, his tattoos, his personality; the video has a lot of him. I am a fan of the locations, and they are the ones that set the mood of a scene. I had in mind a lot of places where I wanted to shoot to give life to this short film.
My videos don’t have dialogues, the images speak for themselves and have a strong visual imprint, although I work from the aesthetic, I think this one has the plus that something strong is going through the character, and the viewer can feel and identify with his pain and his your love.
I think we all went through some loss, and I was inspired by that moment too. I am very nostalgic.
In BLACKOUT there is a magnificent work in editing, photography and music, do you get involved in these aspects?
I take care of everything, but I also delegate and work with very talented people. During the shoot I work with a lot of improvisation and freedom, the most important thing for me is to enjoy that moment and that we are all happy with what we are doing, mainly the actors because the video is theirs as much as mine, basically because they are very independent short films.
Then comes the edition, I start playing with it, I knew that the video was going to have to come and go all the time, because it told the whole story of love, from the time they met, until the tragic end, everything that happens in the middle and how he survives with his anguish. To the editor, Daniela Benedetti, I asked her to work on scenes as cinematographic sequences, so that they have strength on their own, but at the same time when the end came, I wanted a collage and live all those moments with a lot of rhythm. I think that we achieved that, I am very happy with the result.
As for photography, we shoot a lot indoors as well, which allows you to manipulate the light better, we shoot with a network camera, and beautiful vintage cinema lenses. Pablo Desanzo is a great director of photography, he is very talented, and above all things he has a lot of patience, and he teaches me all the time.
I had never done a camera in a short film, and Pablo gave me that opportunity, he talks about his generosity, he let me show some plans and it was fun for me!
I wanted the exterior scenes to be very natural, the colors to be as real as possible to the eye, and indoors,he helped allowing me to do something more dreamlike and magical and fill it with colors that made the difference.
We worked with the music from the edition with references to find the climates, but I had the luxury of working with Joaquín Otero, we got together in his studio and tried things. I don’t understand much about music, or sometimes I don’t know which instrument should I specifically use, I let myself be carried away by the sounds and the emotion they produce. I am very sensory and the music is a trip, so I had to find the way! I think that regarding the music we went through classical, a touch of cumbia and pop.
What is the purpose of the video and its distribution?
It’s a short film for the internet, I like that my videos reach the largest number of people. I like it when they let me show my aesthetics and how I am as director. My main goal is that they keep on calling me to work doing this which is what I like the most. These videos are made in a totally independent way with friends and with lots of love and effort! I think that with this short film one cycle ends and something new begins to enter the world of advertising.
Written, Directed and Produced by Alexan Sarikamichian
Starring: Franco Velastiqui & Delfina Pía Rey & Nikka