Meeting director scriptwriter

Anna Hylander

Being invited into the world of the scriptwriters and being challenged by a text/idea is an important part of my momentum as filmmaker. Or letting my own ideas and trying them against those of a scriptwriters. My goal when working with a scriptwriter is always to immerse myself in the idea and the text, to read continuously and give comments and fuel the content to such a degree that when the shooting approaches "I think that I've written the script myself".

To collaborate with scriptwriters wasn't obvious as a student at The School of Film directing. We wrote everything ourselves and this was expected to come from within. Good training but at the same time I felt that there was something missing. After finishing school I felt the need to define my role as a director. I choose primarily not to be a writing director but instead an interpreting and creative one. The encounter with scriptwriters is constantly present for my part.

Kristian Hallberg, whom I newly started working with, is foremost a drama critic but together we've started discussing scriptwriting for film. How can we together translate his language to that of film? This autumn I presented the idea HOLDING A SPEECH and we decided to sketch out script ideas for a film with and about holding speeches.

The film project HOLD A SPEECH has recently started and hasn't yet found it's form. It's going to be a comedy, twisted and a bit absurd, tragic and cheeky. There'll be lots of characters probably centered around a family. We'll get to know them by the way they talk to each other, from a wedding to a funeral, a castle to a cottage. Facades are maintained and broken down, secrets kept and revealed, expectations meet and fears realized. What we're looking for is comedy, tightness and characters that cross the line.

Our strength lies in the text meeting visual design. Kristian writes and gives the characters their words. His focus is on the dialogue. I interpret, comment and portray. The attached scene is written completely without director's notes or character descriptions. These will be filled in later but to begin with we started of based in the dialogue. This example mainly provides examples of work with text and acting. Later the films design, form and visual look will be tested and constructed. But we're not there yet.

The scene presented here is a work sheet, not part of a finished script or part of an upcoming film. It's a text written to be worked with, by both Kristian, me and the actors. It's a filmed work in process you'll see, not a finished portrayal or a scene.

The actors Sara Sommerfeld and Niclas Engdahl went to The Academy of Music and Drama the same year I went too The School of Film Directing. We had film exercises together and mutually took steps forward. Therefore it was fun working with these specific actors during the shooting of this project.