THANASIS TSIMPINIS, FAWNS
Thanasis Tsimpinis is a young, flourishing freelance film director, editor and screenwriter, based in Athens. Among other works, his first short film «DUST» received critical acclaim and an Honorable Mention at the 19th Athens International Film Festival. His latest success, a short film entitled “FAWNS”, followed in the same footsteps receiving the award for best cinematography at the 20th Athens International Film Festival.
We chatted with the director and got an insight into what he feels is the prevailing message of his film “FAWNS”, as well as what he aimed to achieve and evoke in creating this short masterpiece.
1. Does this film relate to the theme of overbearing Greek mothers that you portray in ‘Dust’? It seems it might be possible to interpret the deer’s letting go of her fawns as an allegory for more positive responses to homosexuality in the context of the Greek family, did you think about this when you were creating the film?
DUST was a personal story about rebellion and coming of age. The truth is that there was never any intention of criticizing the Greek reality. The plot develops in an imaginary environment where most of the defining elements – even the protagonists – act in a symbolic way, similar to that of a fairy tale where one often comes across the evil stepmother. FAWNS on the other hand, uses almost the same means – particularly regarding the relationship between the mother and her young one – to tell a story about love. Again, I wouldn’t say that I am referring the Greek family, since I would like the overriding message of the film to be broader so as to surpass the limitations set by romantic relationships, or even sexual identity. Besides, my wish in this case is that mothers keep their “little” ones close to them.
2. The film has been interpreted as being about a break-up, which I find a little too narrow, and you have spoken of it as a story “about love is general.” Could you speak a little more about these ways of thinking about the film?
The aim of the film is to show that even passionate love can reach its highest objective, that of selflessness. In the case of FAWNS, the mother – and subsequently the lover – kept their distance for the same reason: so as to protect their ‘little’ one. They choose to put the needs of someone else over theirs. This kind of sacrifice can be found in other types of relationships as well, between siblings, friends etc., proving that, ultimately, there is only one kind of love.
3. You have used the starkness of the laundromat in contrast to the smoothness of the lovers, and to the coarseness of forest, how does these each relate to your aim to ‘simply evoke beauty’?
I like it when parallel worlds are created in a film and especially when they subsequently become entwined. I find very magical both the correlation between these parallel worlds as well as the effect of the contrast created in this antithesis. It is like three parallel lines that, when observed independently, appear to have nothing to do with one another until they start overlapping one another, blurring into one single line – that is when everything makes perfect sense. For me, it is through this magical process that beauty is evoked.
4. What motivated you to use a homosexual couple as your protagonists?
The homosexual couple is a means for making the overriding message more clear; this love concerns each and every one of us.
Film Director & Screenwritter Thanasis Tsimpinis
Producer George Chorevas
Executive Producer George Tsokopoulos
Photography Director Konstantinos Koukoulios
Cast Orestis Karydas, Alexis Fousekis.