Waltz With Bashir is an animated documentary based on memories of the Israeli invasion of Lebanon in 1982
The Golden Globe winning “Waltz With Bashir” will be coming to a television near you thanks to UTV World Movies. “The Indian audience is opening to world cinema,” says producer Roman Paul on phone.
Roman lauds UTV World Movies for “bringing international art house cinema to a formerly closed market like India.”
“Waltz With Bashir” is an animated documentary based of writer-director Ari Folman's memories of the Israeli invasion of Lebanon in 1982. Though both genres — animation and documentaries are not big favourites of the Indian audience, Roman is convinced “Waltz…” will find an audience in the country.
“There is always a first time. This is a unique film and as far international cinema goes; the audience is always looking for something new, something not generic, which anyway comes out of Hollywood. No one wants the same kind of food all the time. As the levels of education go up, people are curious about other countries and cultures which one can learn of through cinema. International cinema deals with universal themes in a country-specific way.”
Talking about the choice of genre, Roman comments: “The film is about memories, which are images of reality in hindsight, so animation was the perfect for ‘Waltz…'. Also, it was not physically possible to shoot in many of the places as they had changed greatly.”
Roman's profile reveals him as the head of international feature film acquisitions with Senator Filmverleih GmbH in Berlin and Los Angeles between 1999 and 2002. It was during this period that he was responsible for the acquisition of films such as Lasse Hallström's “Chocolat”, Alejandro Amenabar's “The Others”, Alejandro Gonzales Inarritu's “Amores Perros” and Damien O'Donnell's “East is East”.
Roman, who studied theatre, film and media studies at the Johann Wolfgang Goethe University, Frankfurt/Main says his role in film acquisition required him to buy films for distribution in his country. “I would look at projects, scripts and films. I would look for something unique that the audience would like to see.”
Roman is looking forward to working with Indian directors. “It would be the utmost pleasure to work with Indian filmmakers. I have watched the great Indian filmmakers' works as part of my film studies. However, I would never forget the first Bollywood film I watched, ‘Lagaan.' I absolutely loved it.”
“Waltz With Bashir” airs on UTV World Movies on November 29 at 8.30 p.m.