Interview with Filmmaker Ardalan Pourvali (CITY BY THE BAY)

CITY BY THE BAY played to rave reviews at the January 2022 MUSIC Film Festival.

1. What motivated you to make this film?

I’ve spent thousands of days and nights in San Francisco for business and pleasure and could never get over the grit and beauty of S.F., but what ultimately motivated me was making a film that displayed my perspective of San Francisco as a local who was bred in the East Bay.

2. From the idea to the finished product, how long did it take for you to make this film?

3 months.

3. How would you describe your film in two words!?

Unfailing Love.

4. What was the biggest obstacle you faced in completing this film?

I sifted through 512gb of footage to find the best nuggets, narrowing it down to every single frame.

5. What were your initial reactions when watching the audience talking about your film in the feedback video?

I had an ear-to-ear smile with great laughter. I was refreshed and relieved. Much love to every single individual who watched the film. You made my weekend and I love you all.

Watch the Audience Feedback Video:

6. When did you realize that you wanted to make films?

I fell in love with movies when I was 4 years old in 1990 after watching Tony Scott’s Days of Thunder. It’s one of my earliest memories sitting down on the carpet of a barren apartment on a Sunday afternoon with my family. But I realized I wanted to make films when I was 12. I watched the film Judgment Night, and immediately became curious about screenwriting and how films are written.

7. What film have you seen the most in your life?

Robert Zemeckis’ Back to the Future

8. What other elements of the festival experience can we and other festivals implement to satisfy you and help you further your filmmaking career?

In all honesty, this festival has exceeded my expectations in an awe-inspiring way. I’m honored, humbled and privileged to be included in this festival and I can’t thank your team enough. Much gratitude and appreciation, thank you!

9. You submitted to the festival via FilmFreeway. How has your experiences been working on the festival platform site?

Film Freeway has been great. It’s allowed me to easily access various festivals from around the world, in addition to creating a platform for me to display my personality, in addition to some of my work.

10. What is your favorite meal?

It’s always changing, but right now, I have to say #9 at Popeye’s. Chicken Tenders with Cajun Fries, a biscuit and a diet Coke. Always hits the spot. Couple that with episodes of Cobra Kai and I’m a happy dude.

11. What is next for you? A new film?

I’m hoping to work as a part of the sound team on a feature film in the Spring. I’m currently working on short docufilm, in addition to rewriting my screenplays Five South and Dancer in the Night.


By matthewtoffolo

Filmmaker and sports fan. CEO of the WILDsound Film and Writing Festival

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