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2014 Sundance “Trading Cards” Series: #4. Mauricio Zacharias (Love is Strange)

2014 Sundance "Trading Cards" Series: #4. Mauricio Zacharias (Love is Strange)Nicholas Bell: Name me three of your favorite “2013 discoveries”…
Mauricio Zacharias: Machu Picchu and Pre-Columbian architecture. Brazilian film “O Som Ao Redor” (Neighboring Sounds), about the fears, anxieties and resentments of the new Brazilian middle class. Mad Men season 6 – this TV series keeps inspiring me to explain less, and write more.

Bell: How does your collaboration with the director of your screenplay influence the finished script? For instance, after having written two features for Karim Ainouz and, now, two for Ira Sachs, what changed after the first collaboration that may have made the next project easier (or more difficult?)
Zacharias: Each director has a different approach to collaborating on a script. Some are very hands on, others don’t even want to see any pages until the draft is done. After having collaborated with several directors from different nationalities, I believe that spending time before any word is written on the page trying to agree on a plan of work and, most of all, on a vision for the film, saves everybody involved a lot of time and money.

Bell: Sachs has commented that he all his films are inspired or influenced by one or two specific other films, such as Maurice Pialat’s Loulou for Keep the Lights On. What other films influenced Love Is Strange? How integral was that influence to the process of writing the screenplay?
Zacharias: “Summer Hours”, by Olivier Assayas, inspired us to take our love story, and open it to affect a whole family, across generations. And the films of Ozu showed us the beauty of small gestures and the greatness of small characters. His faith in humanity is an enduring source of inspiration in our work.

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2014 Sundance "Trading Cards" Series: #4. Mauricio Zacharias (Love is Strange)

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Los Angeles based Nicholas Bell is's Chief Film Critic and covers film festivals such as Sundance, Berlin, Cannes and TIFF. He is part of the critic groups on Rotten Tomatoes, The Los Angeles Film Critics Association (LAFCA), FIPRESCI, the Online Film Critics Society (OFCS) and GALECA. His top 3 for 2023: The Beast (Bonello) Poor Things (Lanthimos), Master Gardener (Schrader). He was a jury member at the 2019 Cleveland International Film Festival.

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