Interview with Filmmaker Nicole Manoochehri (BE STILL)

BE STILL, 5min., USA, Dance
Directed by Nicole Manoochehri
An improvised dance film in collaboration with dancer Mélissa Guérin-Torres, Paris-based composer Arnaud Drieu and award-winning cinematographer Steven Fadellin.

Get to know the filmmaker:

1. What motivated you to make this film?
I had taken a personal hiatus from making films, this film was a first step to doing something creative again.

2. From the idea to the finished product, how long did it take for you to make this film?
I can’t really remember the timeline but I do remember pitching the film to Mélissa (the dancer) at the beginning of 2020. We didn’t get the chance to shoot until September 2020 and the film was finished and shared as a valentine on February 14th, 2021.

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

4. What was the biggest obstacle you faced in completing this film?
The biggest obstacle for this film was that we shot during a horrific California wildfire and during Covid! It helped that it was a dance film where simplicity was key and there was room for collaboration and improvisation within the film.

5. What were your initial reactions when watching the audience talking about your film in the feedback video?
I was unable to attend most of the film festivals that my film was selected for and so it was really cool to hear from an audience! It was nice to hear that people connected with the film!

Watch the Audience Feedback Video:

6. When did you realize that you wanted to make films?
Many years ago, when I started out as an actor.

7. You submitted to the festival via FilmFreeway. How has your experiences been working on the festival platform site?
I’m a huge fan of FilmFreeway! It’s very convenient to use, I also run a film festival so I see the festival end of Filmfreeway as well and it’s a great platform!

8. What is your favorite meal?
This constantly changes but currently quinoa tacos! They’re easy to make and so good!

9. What is next for you? A new film?
I’m working on a couple of personal projects, including a fun collaboration that may or may not be a film. I also organize a film festival called Los Angeles Dance Film Festival that keeps me busy (a little shameless plug)! Thank you for selecting “be still” and for all that you do!

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

The first film that comes to mind is “500 Days of Summer”!

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

Interviews like this are appreciated, It’s also really nice to have some kind of feedback from the audience as well as photos or video clips of the actual event (if not in attendance).


By matthewtoffolo

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

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