How do we best kill the mouse?
Interview with Writer/Director/Animator/Editor Shadi Adib
Congratulations! Why did you make your film?
Essentially people write books, rhyme words and make movies and so on when they feel that they need to talk about a certain topic. And that makes them so busy as a creative person that they want to share the idea with other people. In my film, I wanted to express the idea of every minority who opposes the majority. It may be called an illusion of democracy!
Imagine I’m a member of the audience. Why should I watch this film?
Fuse is an extraordinary film in different aspects. The film is a POV of an animal trapped inside a box and the drawings are therefore viewed from the perspective of the fisheye. Expressive dialogues and frame by frame aquarelle drawings make it worthwhile to look at least once.
How do personal and universal themes work in your film?
Generally, I have learned that a good artist is a very good observer who takes the idea from the outside, digests it inwards and brings it outwards, almost like a birth. As I mentioned already, I wanted to express the idea of every minority who opposes the majority – this is a personal but also an omnipresent topic.
How have the script and film evolved over the course of their development?
The story is an adaptation of the Iranian short story author Sādeq Chubak. The author is known for his ironic, blunt language. He has always used a vernacular language in his stories. Persian is a very poetic language, but that's why it can sound very complicated to translate a text from Persian into a Western language. First, I translated the story into German and then in English. Simon Thummet - another scriptwriter of the film - and I discussed every word for months and we also had several conversations about it with different native speakers.
What type of feedback have you received so far?
Very different feedback. But the funniest thing was the question, why the film has such a heavy language. I got just as much praise for the ironic and sharp language as I got criticism for it. I wanted to keep the story true to its inspiration, but some conservative viewers were so distracted by the explicit language that they couldn't discover the intention behind it.
Has the feedback surprised or challenged your point of view?
Not really, because I was almost aware that strength will also be a target of the film. I watched the animation in pre-production with many experts and non-filmmakers. I was very aware that some couldn't stand this heavy language.
What are you looking to achieve by having your film more visible on www.wearemovingstories.com?
I'm excited about many things. From the extra exposure for the film to the search for a way to collaborate with new people.
Who do you need to come on board (producers, sales agents, buyers, distributors, film festival directors, journalists) to amplify this film’s message?
Just what Fuse still needs is as much exposure as possible. That means I am looking forward to every article and interview about the film, the recognition of festivals and festival directors and of course to finding producers for the next animation art film for adults.
What type of impact and/or reception would you like this film to have?
I want the film to be recognized as an independent film, not only as an animation film but also as a cultural bridge.
What’s a key question that will help spark a debate or begin a conversation about this film?
Some of the main themes of the film are: What is the truth and how can one persist in a society suffering from ignorance? The mouse is punished for its inevitable ignorance because at the beginning of the film it searches for the walnut because of its nature and cannot recognize the trap.
What other projects are the key creatives developing or working on now?
After Fuse, I made another short film called Ode about Europe. Now I am looking forward to the new role that life has given me, and I will soon become a mother. But I don't know exactly how my career will continue. I want to tell good stories and work with nice people in a healthy working environment. Where these factors are offered to me, I will be there.
Interview: August 2019
We Are Moving Stories embraces new voices in drama, documentary, animation, TV, web series, music video, women's films, LGBTQIA+, POC, First Nations, scifi, supernatural, horror, world cinema. If you have just made a film - we'd love to hear from you. Or if you know a filmmaker - can you recommend us? More info: Carmela
How do we best kill the mouse?
Director: Shadi Adib
Producer: Stefan Michel
Writer: Simon Thummet, Shadi Adib
About the writer, director and producer:
SHADI ADIB graduated with a master’s degree in animation at the Tehran Art University and attended Filmakademie Baden-Württemberg in Germany. Her film Fuse is currently running for competition in renowned festivals around the world and has already received several awards. She is a preselection jury member of the Stuttgart International Festival of Animated Film. During that time, she also started her work on her latest film Ode.
Key cast: Nick Cave (Voice), Andreas Hykade (Voice), David Bennett (Voice), Shaun Lawton (Voice), Jimmy Hibbert (Voice)
Looking for: buyers, journalists, sales agents, film festival directors
Hashtags used: #handdrawn #watercolor #musical #animation #nickcave
Where can I watch it next and in the coming month? Bengaluru International Short Film Festival/India - 15.08.19; Lviv Short Film Festival Wiz-Art/Ukraine - 19.08.19; Macabro Horror Film Festival/Mexico City/Mexico - 22.08.19307; Film Festival/Laramie/USA - 24.08.19; NFMLA New Filmmakers Los Angeles - 24.08.19; Carton Animation Festival/Buenos Aires/Argentina - 02.09.19; Cinequest Film Festival/Provo/USA - 06.09.19; Quebec City Film Festival/Canada 12.09.19; Gig Harbor Film Festival/USA - 26.09.19; Animario/Madrid/Spain - 26.09.19.