Interview with Filmmaker Yorick Niess (THE WORLD CRUZER)

THE WORLD CRUZER was the winner of BEST EXPERIMENTAL FEATURE at the Documentary Film Festival.

1. What motivated you to make this film?

I realized that living on this planet could be like parodies. If we cooperate, all problems today could be solved easily. It´s only us. This human species to rise through cooperation, but is still too crazy to deal peacefully with its own kind? It can be so nice, when we do. I try to every day.

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

That´s a long story. We started a first version of the World Cruzer in 1996 as life performance. This concept is from 2012. The idea of doing it as a movie came up in 2020. So, in total: doing this film took us 2 to 26 years.

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

Inner growth

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

There were a lot. The biggest was the health of our composer. Nobody knew, if Reecode would survive his rare disease. But it was his „last wish” to finish this composition. We were guiding our composer throughout this process. That wasn´t easy for everyone.

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

I got water in my eyes. That´s all I was working for. If you do something new, you have this uncertainty. Is anyone able to follow your path? Over a long period I wasn´t sure, if the movie is too complex to understand. And this audience really got the message – though they had to deal with subtitles. That was a great moment – very touching for me to see.

Watch the Audience Feedback Video:

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

At the age of 12, when my father gave me a camera for birthday. My friends and me created stories. Everyone was director of his idea and the others had to play roles. You know this game, were one kid has to start a story and the next has to continue? We were doing this with film. I was editing the sequences secretly at night under my duvet.

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

I don´t know why, but this was “Lord of the rings”.

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

Well, I am very happy the way you are. But, if you ask, as a German filmmaker I don´t have much information about the market in other countries – like Canada. So, I would be glad about some orientation or addresses for indie productions.

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

Hui, on one hand it is a major tool to ease up submission process. On the other hand there are some zombie festivals on that platform, where you can loose money. A lot of A-Festivals are not listed. We felt lost. It´s hard to get an overview. You cannot see your competitors. How many awards of what type of festival is good for a movie? What is top and what is bottom? They come up with these discount codes to drive you into addiction. We have been always to slow to catch a free waiver. But basically it is a milestone to have a tool like this.

10. What is your favorite meal?

A meal that my body can digest and which feeds my mind as well.

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

Well, I am into conservation. I am founding a start-up to cool down the planet and save biodiversity next month. But the picture of the Great Apes is always very present to me. Can we go that deep and find the roots in us, where we shared the same food in the forest surrounded by incredible strange creatures? And if you focus on that period 3mio years ago: is our tribal behaviour so different today? I am very concerned about how we treat our historic relatives. The cross-river gorilla is the most endangered gorilla in the world. Most of us don´t even know the name. Scientists don´t even have a high resolution picture of this species. They don´t even know, where to go to find him. I do. DiCaprio supports the mountain gorilla, who is pretty safe this year. If he travels some miles north of virunga, we can end a civil war and save a gorilla, who does need first aid. I wrote some skrips for a blue chip documentary, a feature film or something completely different. I am open to anyone with good ideas for any action.


By matthewtoffolo

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

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