The historical drama Spring on the Last Lake was produced by Radio Television of Serbia, and after its premiere at FEST on March 2 at 6:30 p.m. in the Kombank Hall, it will also be shown on RTS on March 14. Part of the film's cast and crew - director Filip Colovic, producer Marija Bereta, actors Tihomir Stanic, Katarina Markovic and Aleksandar Ristoski - attended the conference. We bring you a part of the interview with the director and Tihomir Stanic.
-It is a great challenge to film an epoch, deal with this kind of topic and talk about the man who marked this region.
Filip Colovic: Of course, it was a very big challenge to make something like this, with this film being mistakenly called a film about Andrić, although it is good for advertising that they call it that (laughs). This is a film that deals with one specific moment, just after the bombing of Belgrade and Yugoslavia in 1941, when all our diplomats were housed in a hotel on Lake Constance, the most prominent being Ivo Andric. The story, then, is rooted in truth; they were staying in that hotel for almost two months. Vule Zuric, the screenwriter, dramatized it a bit, so we are not sure if all these circumstances really looked like that, but there is a good possibility that they did. On the one hand, we have this dramatic situation, political as well as personal - Andric is at that moment in a kind of a love triangle with Milica Babic, a woman he will later marry. These are all things known to the public, but we also offer some that are not, and hopefully we have packed them all into one interesting story, and I am sure it is worth the film.
-Mr Stanic, this is not the first time you have played the character of Ivo Andric; this is also the case with the film Barking at the Stars. You meet our Nobel Prize winner again.
Tihomir Stanic: I appeared in the film Barking at the Stars in the character of Ivo Andric, but I also played it in the television film Znakovi, as well as in the film Žućko; but, by coincidence, I became hooked on Andric twenty years ago. I worked for five months for five hours and eventually mastered the whole story from the novel Na Drini ćuprija (The Bridge on the Drina), which I, along with Dr Ljiljana Popovic, staged as an evening of storytelling. I have been doing this for twenty years and now I have adopted these sentences of Andrić, I do them with ease and I often tell them to people in the café without any reason (laughs). They try to stop me, but they cannot.
I found in Andrić's body an inexhaustible inspiration for my professional life, training, existence, and since mastering Na Drini ćuprija on April 17, 2001, I have never had to worry and suffer the terror of any theatre director, dictator, mismanagement and such. I made my living knowing that I could always recite them in schools. Out of great gratitude to the writer and the work I read at an early age - I was born in school, one corridor divided my room from the library, so as a child I read a lot - I loved this man and this character is very much intriguing, at various stages. I have directed a good deal of my professional and private thinking towards him and I believe that makes me happier, richer and maybe someday smarter. While working on this TV film with Filip Colovic, we immediately understood each other and I would sometimes come up with some proposal for filming, and Filip already had it written in the script. It was a great joy.
The production of the film did not go smoothly.
Tihomir Stanic: I was very pleased with what happened on the first day of filming - at the hotel where we were filming, the set designers hung Nazi flags. Someone burned them during the night. On the one hand, it was a problem for production, new ones had to be made, but I was still pleased - I am glad people respond to these fascist symbols spontaneously and I hope that there is still power in this country to fight fascism.