The card : interview of the creators of the film

Collaborators on the film, the card, which was shot in Vancouver in the spring of 2012, Thierry Predhom and Valentin Schaaf, go back over the genesis of the film and on their respective experience. If they have shared in the cap of a scriptwriter, Valentin was the only one behind the camera while Thierry is playing the main role.

-Hello, can you start by introducing yourself ?

Thierry : Hello, Thierry Predhom, 29 years old, I am the head of accounts for a business of computer software. I live in Vancouver, or I decided to ask one of my suitcases a few times, since 14 months now. I arrived here thanks to the PVT (Holiday Work) and now I am in visa, the Young professional. In search of discoveries, I came here by advice of a friend. When I realized that this city is nicknamed “Hollywood North” (Tron, Twilight, Mission Impossible 4, Percy Jackson, X-men, etc., have been made here), I said to myself that if I wanted to make a film, role, or put one foot in the world of cinema, it was the perfect place to do it.

Valentin : Hi, Valentin, born at Vincennes. Coming out of the patent of the colleges I’ve integrated the cinema section, audiovisual at the lycée Hector Berlioz, where I combined the options mandatory and optional for 3 years, nearly 10 h during cine and shooting per week. I fell in love with the frame and the light, the way my profs, Mr. Yves Strauss and Ms. Suzanne Denée, sensitized me to the discipline. I have met passionate people with whom I worked both as the director or chief operator on various shoots ranging from the amateur to the professional (shooting of tv series for France 2 in 2010).

And then at the exit of the TRAY I have moved away some time of the moving image to bring me closer to the boards, mid that I have attended since the age of 5 years. Preparatory class literary Fénelon for 2 years (hypokhâgne and khâgne) I made the acquaintance of people who are passionate about theatre with which we have set up an association : the troop of Companions Foraging. We have written, mounted and performed a piece during our 1st year of collaboration, and we integrated the projection of images in our second creation, before we look closely at the 7th item in The past year, with the troop of companions foraging, we shot a feature film called In my Silence, the first of which is scheduled for the summer of 2012 (dir: Navy Muller, Director of photography: Valentin Schaaf).

Finally, for the little story, we did a home exchange with a family in Seattle for a month three years ago. During this stay, we rented a car to cross the canadian border for a weekend. I fell in love with the city of Vancouver, coup de foudre.

Then I made myself a promise, that is coming back. And here I am, three years later, back in Vancouver as an exchange student at the University of British Columbia (UBC) in the Film Production Program where I was able to get acquainted with canadian students, but also a little bit everywhere in the world, so passionate that me and very invested. This has allowed me to strengthen my skills and learn new.


-Thierry, where did you get the idea for The card ?

In fact, the idea came to me thanks to a combination of factors: I read the book Superconnect by Richard Koch, and explains the social power and the network are more important than the money. At the same time, I was going to a sports centre, the YMCA, or I went to the swimming pool and I said to myself that everything was free once we had passed through the doors. (Showers, soap, drinking water…etc), and, for a HOMELESS, this would be the ideal place to restructure itself socially, without even the need of money. Then, I began to ask myself: what is it that we actually differentiates a SDF ? The answer is simple: our side superficial or one judge, wanting to or not, by the physical. It reminded me of a documentary I had seen years before on the baths of Caracalla or the poorest people to contact the senators, and therefore, or nudity cancels any social distinction. What are its basic elements which have helped me build this story.

Later, as I was already familiar with, Valentine’s day, I told him about it in order to have his point of view. Immediately impressed, he was motivated to write with me the scenario and the adventure has begun…

Valentine’s day, how did you join the project, can you tell us more ?

Valentine’s day : Thierry had an idea in mind for a potential scenario. He absolutely wanted to talk about it. It was the beginning of December 2011. I offered him to come join me at the end of a day of filming outside in which I was gaffer (gaffer). I think it was the first time he was asked to approach so near a shooting. He particularly liked the dolly that I was helping to stow it in the truck lights.

They withdrew from filming to go sit in a coffee shop. This is where the writing and the realization of the basic idea of this story began.

-You co-wrote the screenplay, how did your collaboration ?

Thierry : Extremely well, and for me, very constructive and rewarding. The cinema is not my world, but the one of Val and it is for this reason that I addressed to him. Then, his enthusiasm, his availability and his motivation, I have been hugely encouraged to go forward, and now the film is finished, it confirms me still more in the idea that I have addressed myself to the right person. It is committed to writing, assist me, direct me also (it is necessary to be honest) to write. He took the time to explain to me and for me a novice in the sector, it has not had price. I think Val likes to be in control over everything, to know everything on the tip of the fingers and the slightest details. When I see the final result, actually, this makes perfect sense.

What I liked in this collaboration at the time of writing is that we talked a lot, and he listened to me a lot about the various details of the story I wanted to tell. With its vision of a more technical and more professional than mine, he knew how to re-channel the story so that it is possible to tell, carried out with the reduced means available to us. He has managed to tell the story I wanted, without losing the essence, and I think this is done thanks to the dialogue that has bound us.

Valentine’s day : Our collaboration has worked, through dialogue, lots of dialogue, long conversations without having to write a line. At the beginning, I think that Thierry has appealed to me to assess the potential of his idea, and then to put it into shape. The idea was good, very good, and Thierry was invested, very invested.

As the writing process, I felt that the project was mine, in the sense that I get involved more personally in the story. I was helping simply Thierry to give form to his idea, I helped create it, formulate it and work to draw the essence of the same. It is in this that our collaboration has worked, and I think it feels like a lot in the film. The question I ask myself when I write a story, this is not about if “the people” would be interested, but it is rather if me, I would like to know more. If the story does not touch me, do me “speaks” not, it is because I am not the right person to tell it. It is in this sense that it was important to me that the communication with Thierry is complete, in order that I understand perfectly his point of view on the story, his vision. Even if I were to place more and more as a director, it was important to me that the initial vision of Thierry is not betrayed.


-And your collaboration on the shooting, or everyone had this time a very different role (Thierry plays the title role, and Valentin realizes the film) ?

Thierry : once again, I was enormously encouraged, supported, and also explained a lot of details, as well as the world of cinema. Regularly, I asked him questions about the lighting or the position of the camera, things that are not at all the role of the actor, but he managed, even with the pressure, and the timer that turns, to quickly explain his vision and for what reasons, by the time, this was not my role to consider this. I think he has great patience, and for me, who am hyperactive, this has helped at all levels and all stages of our collaboration.

Valentine’s day : After 3 months of writing 4 hands, I told him of my commitment to the project and my will to carry it out, he told me of his desire to interpret the 1 role. It was not something obvious, far from it. Thierry is full of energy. I had to help him to channel it, to use it in his game. The scenario relies heavily on the interpretation of the 1st role and Thierry had no experience in acting or camera. C was a big first for him. I’ve never hidden the truth, if I accepted that it plays the 1st role, this is not because he wanted to, but because as our long hours of writing, I felt by his game of comparison, his vision of the situation, his sensitivity and his identification with the character he would be capable of… yet he had him learn the basics of the camera.

You can well judge the result on the big screen during the projection of THE CARD in the festivals to come. From my point of view as a filmmaker, what I can say is that Thierry was able to melt into the skin of a character with which it has no connection, as he was able to bring him a touch of humanity and simplicity that a lot of actors pro would be distorted and that its credibility in this role is to his credit. He was able to embody his idea. This is not given to everyone.

You talk about festivals, how do I get this second life, that of the dissemination, to The Card ?

Thierry : We are trying to register at various festivals, as much as we can, as a function of the visibility and the means at our disposal. For the moment it is registered only at a festival in Lyon, and I am trying to educate myself side Vancouver also. From my side, this is a great first to see the screen to start, and then to try to promote our history. The people sincerely appreciated the story, which is already very rewarding, and the short film has already got good response in the local press. I hope that the vision and the realization that Valentine was able to bring this project to delight different audiences of the festivals that I have seduced myself. C is the test of fire, and we remain very confident.

Valentine’s day : It is very simple. To be able to make films the way we want it, or almost, it takes money. To have money it must be known. In order to get known you have to make see, show, exhibit, promote. And for this, it is necessary to be selected in festivals, and not any. The festivals are taken as a springboard for the creation of new projects. I wait with baited breath to see the reaction of the French public in the face of a short film shot in English Vancouver by a team of French-canadian.

Valentine’s day, what are your film projects to come ?

Valentine’s day : As I said, I can’t wait to see the twist that’s going to take THE CARD.

On the other hand I am also excited by the idea of giving this story the magnitude and the time that it deserves, that is to say, at least 90 minutes on the screen. The scenario has been widely the potential to grow and develop.

From another side I look forward to the premiere of the feature film shot last summer in France, IN MY SILENCE, where I cared for photography. This is my first feature film as director of photography, and being in Canada during the post production, I am hard pressed to see the result.

Finally, as part of the association of the Companions Browsers, an upcoming project looming around the recollection of the Algerian war, told from the point of view of a former foot black. Project to follow…

– Thierry, you who do not know the world of cinema, will you repeat the experience ? If yes, to what position, if not, why not ?

Thierry : THE CARD was for me a great learning experience and continues to be so still. The project does not stop there. Ideally, we want to fine-tune the scenario to be able to make a feature film, so this is only the beginning of a new stage. On the other side, different projects are looming on the horizon, will they? This is in “talks”. I think that the writing (always framed by someone more professional than me) intrigues me still, I think I have still a lot of things to tell…and most of all to learn to get in shape. The rating of an actor I also liked a lot, and I would like to wholeheartedly repeat the experience in order to learn even more, both on the business itself than on myself, and then one day, why not, the achievement would interest me greatly…but there is talk of a new stage of life once again !

– Finally, would you be ready for a new collaboration common ?

Thierry : Our collaboration does not stop there yet. As I mentioned previously, we wish to if possible make a feature-length film, and thus a large work of writing is already in perspective. I think that Valentine’s day has so many elements to bring to this new version of the story than me, so it will be exciting to continue this ! And make another project together? Personally, sometimes twice a day ! I know how it works, he knows how I work, and this is a huge gain in time and energy, I think. You don’t change a winning team, isn’t it?

Valentine’s day : In fact, you could say that it is a start. This is a first collaboration, which, I think, has been incredibly successful and has resulted in this cinematic creation that, I believe, has its chance. This short film was not an end in itself, it is a way to put all the chances on our side for a feature.

The second collaboration will involve, first, to promote THE CARD as a short film to raise awareness of a public to the extent of helping us to produce a feature film with a story similar to but more developed, nuanced and carrier of the essence of the film, which is that the money is not be that allows you to carve a path in today’s society, but more the relationships and links social as it is woven. Finally, in a same time we will have we look back onto the paper and return to the writing that should be done at a distance this time. And even if the current technologies are a great help, it is still a test different. Our collaboration is evolving as well as the film tries to grow.

THE CARD, which was shot in Vancouver, it is 12: 30 p.m. minutes of a story about the social relations that deserve 90 minutes. It is 55 people ( cast and crew) who have put their talent to the effort for this movie for 5 months, from pre production to post production without forgetting the shooting.

Thank you to each and everyone.

The trailer for the Card


The Card – The unofficial trailer from gonewestprod on Vimeo.

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