Why did I decide to make this film? When did I feel the initial spark which usually gives you the motivation and makes film directors enthusiastic about their projects? Every important motif usually lies in the present, although the present and how we feel about it surely has its roots in the past. I would have not been able to make this film 10 years ago, because I did not feel the motivations and dilemmas that film makers have to go through to be able to make their films.
The destiny of film director Lordan Zafranović is unique. And such is his public image in Croatia. As a child I was raised in an anti-communist environment and I shared all the thoughts, sometimes even prejudices, against regime artists, not understanding dilemmas and internal fights they were fighting within themselves. Surely, they were not angels. Artists often behave outside moral borders, they often transgress them and their biographies are not often shown as examples of the moral purity. Their dilemma was (and still is) – to work or not to work, to compromise or not to compromise. One obvious doubt was this: shall I earn political alibi and so buy myself freedom to do artistically what I want? We should not forget, that film costs and large expenses make this kind of art quite different. For film making (contrary to painting or making music) you need money and support.
I also have my dilemmas. I fight with myself and often ask myself a question: do I always have to use moral and honest methods to achieve my goal? And I have failed so often using the "right methods". The temptation is really big. And should the artist be faithful to his morality, or should he be faithful to his art and forget about morality?
This dilemma exists not only in communism, it exists even now when film makers make alliances with politicians, with the media, and even with the audience trying to sell themselves by most populist methods. When does an artist start to be corrupted?
I wanted to tell you a true story of a talented guy, of an overly-conscious ego, who has made a lot of wrong decisions, but who is, and stays, despite all of that – an artist. His public image has been ruined, and dilemmas, which he had, exist everywhere, not only in art and movie making. These dilemmas are, at least I think so, universal.
Pavo Marinković, writer/director