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Bill Megalos “Do not start working in the movie industry if you do not adore it”

25 March 2010 / 10:03:34  GRReporter
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  • - This is a very long period of time. What attracts you here?
  • - I really believe in the workshop education model. I have been teaching in a university and I still do teach in a university. However when you teach in a university with young people you spend with them few hours a week. Maximum 4 to 6 hours and the rest of the time they are somewhere else. Around them there always is some drama, other classes, money food, anything. When people visit the Workshop they spend here twenty four hours. They are very concentrated and very motivated to make a big jump, a great artistic jump in their career. They do not think about the life back at home. And something else, which I like very much is that for most people to come here it is a matter of several years of deciding. They first look around before choosing the workshop they will take part in. They have to get a permission to miss from their work, they have to apply for a scholarship and they have to talk to their husbands or wives that: “this year, here is how I am going to spend my vacation”. Because of this the people are very motivated. They are also older and they say to themselves “I want to learn this at all cost”. And this motivation of theirs makes the work of the teacher much more pleasurable. So the students are dedicated to the studying. Besides this, Main is a fantastic state, it is an extraordinary place in the summer and even in the autumn. I have never been teaching here in the winter, however in the summer and the spring it is fantastic. The workshop is a place where a person puts to work all of his work and energy into the art. This means that it is not just me and on the other side my students. Very often when I teach in the university I get the feeling that my students don’t know what they want that they are there because they cannot think of anything else to do. Not all of them, but most of them are like this. They have begged their parents to send them into a university for film making because they think they will have a good time there. Here in the workshop people create themselves, the creative energy is all around.

 

  • - Your students are very happy with you and they claim they learn a lot of things in your class. But is there anything you learn from them?
  • - What I learn from teaching the students is how much I know myself. Once you start working in the film making industry, somehow you become a narrow specialist. Not just for the actors, but for all of us. If you are a cameraman who makes a certain type of frames very well you will only make this kind of frames. Whether you would be a director of commercials with children or commercials with dogs, you will only shoot those. Even a person like me who has a very wide area of activities throughout the whole world, my job is primarily focused on the developing countries, where I make a certain type of documentaries. They are very interesting, however there isn’t too great variety in them. When you become famous for something the industry is keeping you doing this particular thing. Here every student turns to me with the most different questions, needs various help and I realize that I am in the position to pass on this knowledge. This is what I learn in the very process of teaching. From my students I learn the different approach to the subjects. In the moment you start a professional work you start using the easiest for you solutions. When you have been once in a situation and you have found the way out of it, the next time you get there you do not look for a new way out, you just know it. It is not about not doing your job as you should, but you just become lazier in terms of new solutions.

 

  • - What do you prefer  - to make movies or to teach others how to make movies?
  • - To tell you the truth I prefer to play in a band. The truth is that I want to do both. I have found out that if in my life existed only the professor or only the director I would not be happy. I have found out that there are 6 or 7 personalities existing within me – the husband the father, the teacher, the director, the artist, who creates art just for himself, the musician. I have secret features, which nobody else knows they exist. So in order for me to be happy, each personality inside of me to be fulfilled. Otherwise I would not be happy. I would hate it if I just had to teach or just to shoot.

 

Tags: interview Bill Megalos documentary cinema
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