Interview with Filmmaker Greg Tudéla (BREAKDOWN)

BREAKDOWN was the winner of BEST FILM at the January 2019 EUROPEAN Short Film Festival in Toronto.

Matthew Toffolo: What motivated you to do this movie?

Greg Tudela: I wanted to do a dark comedy against a backdrop of crisis. There has been a social divide in France for years, people are more and more desperate, more and more violent, so I wanted to talk about this. But as I wanted to talk about it with a comedy, I decided to talk about a helpless unemployed person pointing the bar where he goes every day, because he does not know what to do in his life and that he lost his job.

2. From the idea to the finished product, how long did you have to do that?

This idea turned in my mind for 2-3 years, and then I showed the screenplay to Marc Ribaudo, who had a production company and with whom we made “corporate” films. He said he wanted to produce it right away. The next day, a mutual called us to make a film. We decided to make the film without being paid and we put this money in “BREAKDOWN”. We shot the film a month later, mid October. I edited the movie in the wake, Guillaume Farley composed the music in two afternoons, Philippe Demouy made a premix and we sent a work in progress version early november to the International film festival of l’Alpe d’Huez. We were selected among the 11 films in competition, over 250 and early January, we were at the Alpe d’Huez, the largest comedy festival in France. The career of Breakdown had begun.

How would you describe your short film in two words?

Breakdown is It’s a blaze of lead (not easy to find a really literal English translation anyway)

4. What is the main obstacle you encountered while producing this film?

The film was shot in two days, even if it would have been better for us to shoot it in three days. I can’t complain anyway. Actors and crew were fantastic.

5. What were your first reactions when you watched the audience talk about your movie in the rendering video?

I was very proud because they understood the spirit and style of the film. A genre film mastered and original. It is very rewarding to talk about his film on another continent.

Watch the Audience FEEDBACK Video:

6. How did you get the idea for this short film?

The social situation in France, due to the increase in unemployment, made the atmosphere tense, especially in my neighborhood. So I wanted to tell this story in a neighborhood bar.

7. Which movie did you see most in your life?

Probably “Once upon a time in America” by Sergio Leone.

8. You have submitted to the festival via Film Freeway, how do you feel about the submission platform from the point of view of a filmmaker?

Thanks to Film Freeway, one of the best submission plateform. We have been able to participate in more than 52 festivals, in the United States, Canada, England, China, Croatia, etc… and won 18 international awards. It was a real springboard for “Breakdown”.

Thank you Film Freeway!!!

9. Which song have you listened to most often in your life?

I think it’s a Nina Simone song “Is not got no, I got life”