Margareta F A Orkan was born in Sweden and lives in the North of Norway. She specializes in directing sci-fi shorts. Her debut “G” (2014) was her first official film. Later she has directed and written films such as The Factory (2017) and Tide (2018). During Tromsø International Film Festival 2018 she earned the Debutant Award for The Factory.
Meet the Artist: NY Elite Interview with Director Margareta F A Orkan
NY Elite: Congratulations on being an official selection at the prestigious International Filmmaker Festival of New York. What are your thoughts about being accepted at IFFNY 2018 film festival and having your film screen in New York City?
Margareta F.A Orkan: It’s very exciting to be chosen for IFFNY. The lineup for this year looks really good. I believe NYC is one of the greatest cities in the world, so for for Tide to be accepted for a festival here is really exciting for me.
NY Elite: Out of the 500 submissions world-wide, your film was selected as the top 40 for IFFNY. What does this mean for you in terms of representing your country/city at this international film competition?
Margareta F.A Orkan: We’re very thrilled to be able to represent our country. Tide is the only Norwegian film in the program. I believe the nature that is shown in Tide will show people how beautiful Norway really is.
NY Elite: With what project are you partaking at IFFNY 2018? What is it about?
Margareta F.A Orkan: I’m the director of the short film Tide which will be screening Sunday at 6 p.m during the festival. Tide is about a father and his never-ending love for his daughter. It plays out at the line between tall mountains and the always moving sea. The father works on his unusual boat and all the work he puts into it he does for his family. The anticipation of completing it is just as high as it is a burden. He must succeed.
NY Elite: Who else is involved in the making of this project? Tell us a little bit more about the story and who is in it.
Margareta F.A Orkan: My producer Erasmus Bergli who I am very thankful for is the first to highlight in this project. He will be at the festival as well and is looking forward to screen our film for New York. We have many talented people from the North of Norway working on this film like Eirik Nicolai Heim the DoP and Andreas Wangsbro our composer and sound effects guru to name a few.
I also have to give some praise to the wonderful actors we used in the film. The little girl in the film, Iselin TandeAronsen, had never been in a short film before, but she was so great and lovely that she even made people more focused on the job. It was kind of funny really. The two main actors, Espen Østman and Maja Skogstad, are really professional. Working with them on the film was so much fun, I learned a lot.
NY Elite: What message do you want to convey with this project?
Margareta F.A Orkan: This is a story about family, time and the fragile side of life. The movie is really about appreciating the important moments in life, and to be able to accept it when those moments passes. That is the baseline of this film the problem of accepting that the love is changing form.
NY Elite: The Red Carpet Opening Ceremony and the Awards Gala will take place at the renowned Kaufman Astoria Studios of New York. What do you want the audience at IFFNY to take away from this film?
Margareta F.A Orkan: I will be joining the festival and I’m looking forward to see this festival up close for the first time. I hope I get the chance to talk with the audience and answer any questions that might pop up. It’s always exciting to hear what people take from the film. If I were to guide their attention I would hope that they consider what parental love is and how it truly does surpass time. I would like to think of the film as a seed in which thoughts can grow from. For some this “thought-seed” will be about love, others loss and for some impossible dreams.
NY Elite: What makes a film great for you? Are there certain qualities that make a film better for you?
Margareta F.A Orkan: The qualities that make a film great are many in my opinion, but one quality that stands out is always the relationship between dialog and actor. When a film is truly great the script and the actors are perfectly in sync. The funny thing is that it’s not really about what the lines are but how they are conveyed. Sometimes an entire scene could be about a pause in the dialog and the change that happens in that moment of silence. I think writers, actors and directors who can capture that moment, and truly use the underlying plots, are artist in their craft.
NY Elite: Top 3 favorite films/projects you have been involved in?
Margareta F.A Orkan: My favorite projects I would have to say are The Factory and Tide. My previous short film The Factory which we filmed at an abounded factory. I completely fell in love with that location and every day was filled with car-trouble, cold weather and laughter. It was truly an amazing project to be a part of because everything that could go wrong went wrong but we had an amazing time anyway and still got through the shoot without much delay.
And then there is Tide following close on the Factory’s tale, not in ranking but timewise, and being an even more ambitious idea with the weather changing its mood every ten minutes. Tide was truly interesting to work with due to the location and boat logistics but most of all because we had a very diligent team who did everything to get that perfect shot. They’re heroes in my eyes after seeing how they work and I will be working with them again on my next project. And our young actress who played the daughter was very patient and happy which is truly a bliss when the shooting schedule is packed.
NY Elite: What are your career highlights and achievements thus far?
Margareta F.A Orkan: Probably receiving the debutant award by the North Norwegian Film Center during Tromso International Film Festival 2018 for The Factory, I would say are one of the recent highlights. It being my first award I hardly remember saying anything other than thank you a thousand times and having my heartbeat in my ears. It opened new opportunities for me with new partnerships and acquaintances. Also it makes it easier to build a foundation for future projects.
NY Elite: Do you express yourself creatively in any other ways?
Margareta F.A Orkan: Film is my passion, but I also write books in my spare time. The book-writing is more of a hobby at this stage and nothing I’m pursuing. It’s relaxing and have improved and contribute to my script writing. Drawing has also been a big part of my life. My style there reflects my interest in films and it’s all about dragons, sci-fi, robots and monsters.
NY Elite: What advice would you give to someone who wants to have a career in filmmaking?
Margareta F.A Orkan: As someone who was told that she didn’t really fit as a director I would say prove them wrong. You know yourself best. Never give up, because that is what truly separates the successful from the non-successful. Your own voice and your talent will grow with each experience. If you continue to work for your goal you might just reach it. And if you happened to be in charge of your first film, make sure there is enough coffee.
NY Elite: What’s next for you?
Margareta F.A Orkan: Me and Erasmus have a new short in preproduction which will go into production by the end of this summer. Unlike my other films this is actually not a sci-fi but a drama which is new and interesting. I can’t really say too much at this stage, but what I can say that it takes place in a pool.