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Film Critics Association 2015 Award for Best Film Journalism

Bogdan Mirică

  • Screenwriter, Director
  • Born: 18.04.1978 in

Graduate of the Journalism and Communication Faculty of the Bucharest University. He has worked as an editor, copywriter and writer and in 2005 he became the youngest Creative Director in European advertising. He studied scriptwriting and film production at the Westminster University in London. He has worked as a script reader at Slingshot Studios and took part at workshops held by Martin Scorsese, Ken Loach, Bruce Robinson. He came back to Romania, where he collaborated with MediaPro Pictures and HBO Romania. Selected at the Berlinale Talent Campus in 2013.His debut feature Dogs/ Câini was presented at the Torino Script Lab in 2013.


Bogdan Mirică on Dogs/Câini: 
The script – It’s inspired from a world that I know very well – the world in which I grew up in the countryside with my grandparents. However, it wasn’t that world in itself that interested me, but my emotions towards it, emotions which I can still feel. What struck me was the arbitrary and unpredictable nature of the violence happening there – I saw people getting into deadly fights out of uncertain reasons – and I find this to be frightening. How can you defend yourself against something you can’t anticipate – not even in theory? In a “normal” society violence can usually be accounted for by taking into consideration one or several causes. But not there – there violence seemed to spring out of nothing. Out of the darkness of human nature, I suppose.
I think I started writing the script about five years ago – I stopped a few times along the way because I had to “get out” of it, then I went back to it, I presented it during several workshops. I didn’t stall – I firmly believe that every story needs a gestation period – you can rush it, but it’ll show. And even if it won’t show, still you, the writer, will now that the story wasn’t yet ready.
The production – We scouted locations a long time. In the script I was very specific about how I wanted the places to look like – some of them played a part in the dramaturgy-, meaning that the space determines something of the action. So we had to do a lot of scouting and, sometimes, we even had to remodel a little bit the scenery – either physically, on location, or during post-production, when we erased some elements I didn’t want in the shots. I wanted the landscape to be a character on its own – poetical and hostile. The shooting lasted about 28 days. It was pretty difficult – this usually happens when you’re shooting a lot in a natural environment, when you depend a lot on the weather, when you’re filming in the summer at night – and nights can be very short when you’re working with kids, animals or when you’re usingstunts. We had them all.
The actors – We went through casting for a good number of months. I was looking for a sort of rough physicality which would possess something ominous, without necessarily being aggressive. At the same time, I liked this idea that all the characters should have a tormented beauty to them, the beauty you see in people who are struggling – and I think I achieved this (admittedly, at times with the help of some make-up). And last but not least – the film isn’t conceived in a realist register – I sometimes enjoyed spending more time with the characters than it would have been natural – and I think this is another element which boosts the beauty I mentioned earlier.
Cinema ­– I like cinema because it catches me by surprise and I would like to make films that can, too, catch others by surprise. I admire Melville, Cassavetes, Nuri Bilge Ceylan, Jacques Audiard.