Amidst the Quiet

My name is Natalya Serova, I am a producer of the project “Amidst the Quiet”. Having experience in many parts of pre- and post-production, I am currently working as a photographer, videographer and social media content creator in Milan.


1. Your project has entered in our festival. What is your project about?  
The short movie “Amidst the Quiet” is telling the story of a couple which has a lot of love and a lot of fear - fear of vulnerability, being afraid to trust each other enough to open up and discuss emotions and feelings with full honesty. The main idea is portraying the way miscommunication ruins the relationship bit by bit, and later, no matter how much love there might be, it may be impossible to overcome and fix.


2. What are your ambitions with your project?  
When making the project, especially in the pre-production stage, our main goal was to put our own experience and feeling into something tangible and real that other people could relate to and recognise. Entire team is very happy and proud of the result and now we want to share something so dear to our hearts with the bigger audience to invoke emotion and share it, also possibly giving some amount of solace to those who are going through the same thing at the moment.


3. Tell us somethng about your shooting? What pleasantly surprised you?  
The most amazing thing happening on set was seeing how involved and inspired everyone was and how smoothly it was going. Considering that the pre-production stage was quite long for a smaller project (about 5-6 months since the idea was born), we were surprised by how we were able to shoot the entire thing in one day. Taking the weather conditions on the day of shooting into consideration - about 33 degrees in the end of June, which was making it much more difficult to shoot, especially since it is a choreography based project and the actors were dancing all day - seeing everyone on set being so focused and dedicated was a powerful moment.



4. For what group of spectators is your film targeted?  
Our film is targeted for anyone who has ever been in a relationship of any kind and has struggled with it or encountered something that has to be overcome in order to make it work - be it inside of one person or between partners. This way, no matter if a person is 16 or 60, they can be reminded of something they’d felt before while watching our film. However, younger audience that is only learning to build connections but already has some experience with it might see more of themselves in this short movie.


5. Why should distributors buy your film?  
This film can invoke a powerful emotion in less than 10 minutes while also being aesthetically pleasing and showcasing the power of choreography in storytelling which proves that words are not always necessary to convey an idea, a feeling, a story.


6. How would you specify your work? What characterizes your film?  
“Amidst the Quiet” is a dance short movie, fully based on choreography and metaphor. It uses movement and body language instead of a dialogue to tell a story while also involving very little external help - meaning that the main focus is on two main characters moving in an almost empty space devoid of unnecessary detail.


7. Why did you decided to become a filmmaker?  
I loved watching backstage videos of the films and shows that I’ve seen and liked since I was a teenager. I was curious to know which steps were taken to create something I enjoy watching, I wanted to see the actors’ relationships behind the camera. It seemed to be some other magical world to me and I decided to become a part of it and feel it for myself.


8. Who is your role model?  
I don’t have one and never had. The inspiration and motivation for my actions is a happier, fulfilled, successful version of me that I want to become.


9. Which movies are your favorites? Why?  
All Paolo Sorrentino’s movies are special for me. To me, they are a perfect combination of deep meaning and stunning cinematography that looks like art. “The Grand Budapest Hotel” by Wes Anderson is a visual masterpiece that I love. And one of the recent movies that immediately became a favourite of mine is Andrew Dominik’s “Blonde” which has that metaphorical, “blurry” style striving to portray emotion and feeling that I am very inspired by.


10. Where do you look for inspiration for your films?  
My main source of inspiration for my work is emotions and feelings as well as the experience I have and keep going through. Being also a photographer and videographer, I find it very important to be emotionally intelligent and empathic as a creator to be able to feel the person that is in front of a camera, or to connect with a character that I am creating. Daily life, its little details and moments and feelings that these things cause is my biggest inspiration.


11. Which topics interest you the most?
The endless depth of a person’s internal world, the growth that happens as a result of experiences we go through and the effects these experiences have on our actions later. Human’s internal world and psychology interest me the most and are what I like to portray in my work.


12. What do you consider your greatest achievement in your career?
For me the greatest achievement is receiving spectators’ feedback and getting to know that absolutely different people can relate to my work, to its idea, to its story. To know that my creation invoked emotion in someone, made them stop for a moment and just feel and reflect on it is the best and most moving thing. Talking about more tangible things - when “Amidst the Quiet” first won in two nominations in an international film awards festival was a very special moment for the whole team.


13. What do you consider most important about filming?  
In my opinion, it is very important for the entire team to be on the same page about as many things as possible, to have the same idea and vision of the result. Of course, disagreements can arise which is normal but what brought the best results for me was when all members of our team were envisioning the same end product and were moving towards the same goal. So I would say, communication and discussion between everyone in the team is the most important thing to make sure that we are all working on the same product and the result is rewarding for everyone.


14. Which film technique of shooting do you consider the best?  
I love it when the movie has its rhythm. Whether it is based on music or a dialogue or a storyline, I appreciate it when the shots and their duration are corresponding to what is happening in the story. I especially like longer, slower shots for moments I would like the audience to focus on and feel more.


15. How would you rate/What is your opinion about current filmmaking?  
In my opinion, current filmmaking could be more adventurous and implement more non-linear storytelling. Also, I find that often filmmakers rely heavily on modern technology and special effects, and as a result, quality of the visual part might overshadow the quality of storyline, dialogue and character development, which, for me, is the most important part of the movie. It is nice to see well-produced works but the depth of the plot comes first for me.


16. What can disappoint you in a movie?  
When a movie lacks in continuity and character depth and leaves me feeling like I only got to touch the surface of the story and the characters.


17. Who supports you in your film career?  
The longer I am doing this and the more involved and confident I become - the more people start expressing their appreciation of my work and showing encouragement, even if they didn’t understand it at first. My biggest support is my friends and family who remind me of what I have already done and how much I am capable of when I start doubting myself. Growing a career means also meeting more like-minded people and colleagues and creating a community which is another big source of support.


18. What are the reactions to your film? (opinion of spectators, film critics, friends and family)  
Almost everyone who watched it and gave their feedback were able to relate to the story in one way or another. Younger audience especially recognised some of the patterns that happened in their lives as well and shared their thoughts and experiences.


19. Have you already visited any of the prestigious film festivals?  
“Amidst the Quiet” is participating in several international film festivals at the moment and we are proud and happy with any recognition and victory we get, no matter how big or small.


20. What are your future plans in filmmaking carriere?  
To be able to make an impact on people individually through visuals and stories combined - that has always been and remains the biggest goal. Talking more about mental health and experiences we all go through with the help of filmmaking, creativity and self-expression, trying to connect with the emotional and sensual part of people I create with and people who watch these creations. And, of course, to keep exploring ways in which I can tell the story and express my ideas on screen without using words - only through movement and human body as a medium - that is the niche of filmmaking I want to be a part of.