PINKY SWEAR - Whatever She Wants

Directed by Tau Tau Menghan

Berlin- based writer-director Tau Tau Menghan is previously known as a crime novelist, who has own 'sex & city ' style columns on news papers and magazines.After her relocation to Berlin, she started to produce and direct films.From short film ‘Angry Fruits Hotel’ to ‘Open Wound-the Über movie(Aka.Time is Up)' and her feature debut Pinky Swear-Whatever She Wants,she carries on her unique style of ‘Fruity Crime’ from her novels to her films.Feature film’ Open Wound-the Über Movie (aka’ Time is up’) has won 21 international film awards ,including the best independent Film producer for Tau Tau at HIMPFF to recognize her spirit and talent as a Berlin independent filmmaker.

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What is the story behind your film?
The essence of "Pinky Swear - Whatever She Wants" lies in a captivating premise where a female writer-director's reality starts to unravel as her script transforms into a complex enigma that the entire cast and crew must decode. This concept creates layers of storytelling, where the story behind the story becomes a central theme, inviting the audience to delve into a web of intriguing narratives within the film.

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What should people take away, gain, realize after watching your film?
Following their experience with 'Pinky Swear - Whatever She Wants,' we aspire for viewers to develop a profound appreciation for life's unexpected adventures. The film prompts reflection on the little things that may start with unwrapping a lollipop, carrying a seemingly harmless water gun, or embracing unique fashion choices like butterfly shoes. On a personal level, I've grappled with societal expectations that prescribe a specific mold for intellectual women. The movie questions the need to conform to these expectations and highlights the importance of being true to oneself. It's a narrative that touches on feminism, encouraging the idea that women should be free to excel in their own unique strengths, without the burden of emulating men in areas where their natural abilities might differ. The film challenges the prevailing discourse that restricts individuals to prescribed gender roles. It serves as a thought-provoking and stylish journey, rooted in my personal perspective on contemporary gender dynamics, and we hope it prompts the audience to embrace and celebrate diversity in both men and women, offering a more open and inclusive space for everyone to be themselves.

Do you think that films can change people for the better or for the worse?

As a filmmaker, I believe that the primary objective in creating a film should not be to deliberately influence or change others. Instead, the highest priority should be the emotional impact the film has on the filmmaker themselves. A truly exceptional film should have the power to evoke genuine emotions, whether it's tears, laughter, or a profound sense of relief. If, by chance, some members of the audience share those feelings, then it becomes the destiny of the film. I hold the belief that films created with the explicit intention to influence others often lack the depth and authenticity that comes from a heartfelt and personal connection to the story. This perspective is deeply personal and reflects my approach to filmmaking

What creation style did you use in the production of your project? What cameraman elements did you use?
In crafting 'Pinky Swear - Whatever She Wants,' our production style was meticulously designed to create a visually immersive and emotionally engaging experience. Given the film's unique 'film within a film' concept, we collaborated closely with our dedicated cinematographers, Damir Muchimov for 'Pinky Swear' and Felix Gauger for the 'film in film,' to seamlessly balance static and handheld shots. This collaboration allowed us to capture the authentic essence and movements of a Berlin independent project from a firsthand perspective. The result is a distinct visual language that reflects the intricate and multifaceted nature of our story. Furthermore, the expertise of our gaffer, Ron Engel, and the art director, Nexar Antonio Flores, were instrumental in bringing this vision to life.

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How did you select the actors for your project?
The selection of actors for 'Pinky Swear - Whatever She Wants' was a serendipitous process, guided by fate. Destiny played a significant role, as I met many of them in unexpected places. For instance, I first crossed paths with Nadine Nourney in a bustling sushi restaurant in L.A, where our connection was immediate. Christoph Schulenberger and Vladyslav Schiilenko joined the cast after casual tea gatherings in my living room, their presence feeling like a natural fit. I encountered Chris Angel Walker and Damir Muchimov during language school sessions. Abbas Mohammad Ayyoubi and I found each other in Berlin Space Meduza Bar, while Sean Lee became part of the project after an encounter in the WeWork pantry. ..These chance meetings enriched the film's overall appeal and made the casting process an unforgettable journey

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Why do you think your film should appeal to distributors?
Distributors would find 'Pinky Swear - Whatever She Wants' intriguing due to its fresh and daring approach to cinema. The film seamlessly melds innovative storytelling with a bold and distinctive stylistic execution, resulting in a captivating and thought-provoking thriller. It's a movie that's likely to resonate with audiences who enjoyed films like 'Black Swan' or 'Get Out,' as it explores similar themes and delivers a similarly gripping experience.

At which festival has your film been screened?

We've recently completed 'Pinky Swear - Whatever She Wants' this summer. While we've received numerous invitations for our worldwide premiere, it's still premature to finalize the debut location, as more exciting opportunities are on the horizon.

How did your acquaintances react when they first saw the film?
The reactions from my acquaintances when they first saw the film were quite surprising. This aspect, in fact, serves as a core motivation behind my work as a filmmaker. In my daily life, I often find myself misunderstood and misrepresented. The common perception is that I'm a dominant intellectual who must maintain strength, independence, and the role of a caregiver constantly. However, through this film, for the first time, they were able to glimpse beneath the surface, discovering a desire to embrace a softer side – a wish to enjoy the small, charming aspects of life and be on the receiving end of tender gestures. It's a voice that my acquaintances might never have heard if they hadn't seen this movie, a longing to be allowed to be vulnerable and occasionally pampered, even if just a little.

If you could change something in your film, what would it be?
Reflecting on the film, one aspect I would consider changing is the final flashback scene. I believe it could have been more emotionally engaging and poignant if it had been filmed in the actual locations mentioned, rather than relying solely on dialogue to convey the essence. However, due to budget constraints, I had to make a more practical choice.

Which movies are your favorites and why?
I hold a deep affection for classic Alfred Hitchcock films like 'Vertigo' and 'The Birds.' What captivates me about these movies are their meticulous composition, rich use of color, and thoughtfully crafted scripts. However, it's Hitchcock's unique approach of engaging the audience in a suspenseful game, rather than simply narrating a story, that truly resonates with me. In a world where life can often be challenging, I find the idea of infusing fun and intrigue into filmmaking incredibly appealing

What topics do you like to address in your stories?
My passion lies in exploring the theme of 'escape.' I believe that throughout our lives, we are constantly seeking ways to break free - be it from our past, our fears, our desires, or sometimes even from our own selves. Escape is an enduring and universal human endeavor, and it has been a central theme in my work from the first film I produced, 'Open Wound - The Uber Movie,' to my latest project, 'Pinky Swear - Whatever She Wants',that written and directed by me, In each narrative, the characters grapple with the idea of escaping from their confined circumstances, making it a theme that continually intrigues and drives my storytelling.

What is your motivation in making films?
My motivation comes from a simple wish that's rooted in my everyday life. I've often been seen as this 'dominant intellectual or business leader' .But deep down, I yearn for those moments of vulnerability and the joy of being pampered, even in the littlest, coziest ways.

Which contemporary filmmakers motivate you the most?
Robert Rodriguez's filmmaking style resonates with me because of his boundless passion and willingness to push the boundaries of cinema. His ability to infuse his projects with enthusiasm and playfulness, while consistently delivering captivating narratives, is what I find truly remarkable.

What projects do you plan to shoot in the future?
My upcoming project is 'Double Double Check,' a unique blend of individuals striving to break free from mundane day jobs and embark on a journey toward their dream careers. It's a fusion of escapism and the pursuit of personal fulfillment.I think it will be again a wild unexpected cinematic journey.