LFS MA Filmmaking graduate, Lara Zeidan, from Beirut, Lebanon, made her way to the Berlinale '18 this past week. Lara's short ‘Three Centimetres’ was selected for the Generation 14plus competition, a section that is "home to cinematic works that are thematically and aesthetically linked to the experiences of children and young people."
We met up with her at the UK Film & Talent party organised by the BFI and the British Council at Clärchens Ballhaus in Berlin. In this historic, beautifully decaying ballroom Lara and her crew which includes LFS alumni Pierfrancesco Cioffi (cinematographer), John Giordano (producer), and Kateryna Zabulonska (sound recordist) kicked back, chatted, and enjoyed drinks and dancing.
Two days later, Lara’s short showed at a sold-out screening at Potsdamer Platz. Lara's film plays out on a Ferris wheel in Beirut, with four young women going round and round. But their playful conversation suddenly takes a turn and when the girls get back to the ground, their perception of each other has changed. (As an aside, Zeidan also manages to weave in a bit of exposition about the Beirut's energy supply.)
‘Three Centimetres’ was shown together with sevenother shorts, which included two documentaries and two animated films, of varying lengths. Zeidan proved that shorter is better at festivals: She told her story in a snappy nine minutes, and nothing was lost.
Zeidan and crew await to hear about awards and prizes announced this evening. However, regardless of the outcome, ‘Three Centimetres’ proves Zeidan speaks for a generation, to a generation and to an audience beyond.
Best of luck tonight to Lara at the awards ceremony!
(Photos and reporting by Päivi Kotro-Brenner)