Meet Indie Filmmaker: ONE DAY AFTER 10TH DAY

By Lindsay Mayer

Q: Tell me about the storyline. How did you come up with the idea?

I went to Yazd city in Iran. I knew that there is a ceremony going on every year in one [of] the villages. Although, I went there to make a documentary about that ceremony for a TV programme, I suddenly saw that old man living in the ruined place, being isolated and living his solitude life. Then [it] suddenly was like snapping one s fingers and [I] thought that might actually be a good idea to film this old man. Because I thought his life should be so interesting to many people either living in Iran or abroad. I mean it should be even be more interesting to so many people living in Europe because of [the] completely different culture.

Q: The landscape is a big part in this film. Where does the film take place? Did you have any difficulties or trouble filming any places?

Well, I think I have [had to face] so many troubles. First of all, it was the people who lived [in] that place. I could hardly get their permission to make this film because they were all against it. And this was all because most of the people [in] that city are not educated enough to understand the content of the film. They have actually thought that I am making something against [their] religion. The other problem was that city is one of the warmest [cities] during the summer. The degree level of the weather was 46 centigrade. Very hot! So it was [quite] hard to work there for 20 days. And you know because I did not have much time to make this film I had to do the storyline in two days. Also the roads were so narrow hardly two people could walk and it was quiet hard to decide where to place the camera to get different shots and positions in [a] scene and I hardly and fortunately managed to do that.

Q: The processional trumpets halfway through the movie are awesome! Where was this filmed?

That’s the way the ceremony was. People were well prepared for that and I just filmed it from different positions.

Q: Which brings me to my next question: Sound plays a crucial part in this film, from the music to the sound effects. What were you guided by in choosing the music and amplifying certain sounds and not others?

This music also comes from the ceremony. That [is] how they play the trumpets and drum for this ceremony and I thought I should definitely use them in my film.

Q: Explain a little bit about the parade/procession that takes place at the end. It was provoking to see the men openly shedding tears. What footage was this from?

This ceremony is going on every year in Iran. Almost in every city of Iran. However, the Yazd and Qom city always had the best parade among the others. This ceremony is going on for the dreadful death of a holy man called Hossein that [took] place about 1500 years ago. And people are shedding [tears] because they believe someone like Jesus, innocent, has been killed by some tyrant and cruel people. And also it [has] to do with the culture as well. Iranian people are very emotional, very caring and if they see someone is upset about something and crying, helping them first to relax they will start to cry with them as well. So, I can say by seeing [these] scenes they can easily burst [into] tears. This ceremony is also [a] traditional event and many people made miracle plays from it, which are [quite] traditional.

Q: Ultimately, what message do you hope comes out of the film for audiences?

There are basically so many messages that audience can get from the film. One [of] the important messages was the love between that old man and the camel. A camel is given to him every year [a] few month before the ceremony to [be taken] care of and when the time of the ceremony arrives the camel [is] given to people to kill it. So the old man is quite upset because he is going to become alone and isolated again. And you know he was only sharing the love between a little girl from neighborhood and the camel and solitude, because they were the only things he had [in] his life. Therefore there are so many things which this film contains: Love, solitude, culture, tradition, poverty, religious people, and also the accent that people from that city have is hardly understandable for an Iranian person who hasn’t been [living] there.

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