HOLD ME director’s note

The idea of using the internet to share stories of loss came to me two years ago while I was developing a teaching method based on the ‘ecriture automatique’ concepts developed by the surrealists for the free expression of the subconscious in storytelling. I used this method now many years with actors in schools and in preparation of my theatre work...

My last (third) fiction I directed for the cinema was back in 1997 and since I have been doing one feature doc almost every year.

They have all been released theatrically and they evolved around social themes. I needed to move form my earlier storytelling into something more relevant and moving.

My experience with building the site for hold me my recent movie www.holdme.gr was very revealing sharing these stories with hundreds of people I did not know but felt so close to what I had in mind for the script. It took two year to develop the script and to communicate and filter these stories until early in 2005.

I started meeting with some of the writers that agreed to have their stories in the film and started shooting with them their stories using the concept if the game of touch as it was presented in the site from the very beginning.

The script was than completed after this first phase of the shooting was completed and integrated some of the stories. Happily some of them blended extremely well in the writing with the story of Julia as it was coming alive in the story I was writing...

An unfortunate event gave room to another strong subplot of the film One of the writers who have contributed stories to the web site died suddenly in a free fall in Bulgaria.

In the beginning this came as a very strong shock and halted my work until most of the other writers encouraged that we go on with the film and integrate George’s story.

We have now completed shooting the film HOLD ME in October 2005 and we are starting the editing phase.

Our approach when shooting but also now at the editing phase is to portray with strong visuals the highly moving story of Julia in connection with the shared stories. Often our narrative used the free interpretation of the subconscious as it could be perceived in images and free flow of thought.

Despite how this may sound some of our narrative preserves the linear form.

We are already testing some of our material in screenings with a variety of public and the common line is that the strong emotion is delivered avoiding melodramatic outbursts while keeping an impressive variety of strong visuals.

Despite the initial unusual concept the film seems to hook the viewer into an emotional and aesthetic journey.

Lucia Rikaki

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