Babette Mangolte was present for a retrospective of her work at the Essay Film Festival in 2017.
- What was it about film-making that led you to become interested in cinema?
I discovered cinema around 1959. At that time, I didn’t think I could make films – essentially I was a spectator interested in watching films, in particular silent films and foreign films. I felt films could show you places you will never go to as well as reveal ideas to you that could not be expressed with words.
Prior to 1959 when I went to Paris to go to university I had seen only a few films. I was mostly interested in theater and novels when I was young, so I was familiar with English, Russian, Italian, American and French literature but I had serious gaps in German literature, so discovering Weimar cinema was a wonderful surprise.
When I was a teenager, I was essentially reading six hours every day. Later I replaced my reading evenings with watching movies at the French Cinematheque. I think silent films shaped my taste and made me discover the image. By 1962 I was watching films from 10 AM until midnight and so I had to find a way to make a living of it. I decided to become a cinematographer – the image and the camera movements were the most interesting to me. Continue reading “Essay Film Festival 2017: Interview with Babette Mangolte”