The Portuguese writer-director on his connection with short films, Godard and his latest project “Nausea”

Why was it important for you to apply to the European Short Pitch?

I look at the European Short Pitch as an opportunity to discuss my script with experienced screenwriters, to be able to pitch it to European producers, and to meet other young European filmmakers. Those were the reasons that made me want to participate.

 How do you define a good script and how did you see your chances when you applied?

I don’t profess any rules or formulas, but I would say a good story is able to guide the viewer through an unknown territory and awake something hidden in him/ her.  I didn’t have any idea about my chances of being selected. I ignored how many people applied and what the jury’s sensibility was.

 Tell us about where you come from and how you got involved with films.

I was born and raised in Porto, a Kafkian town in the north of Portugal. Since I can remember I always loved reading, writing and storytelling, but never really thought about cinema. And then one day I watched Godard’s “A Bout de Souffle”…

Why is your film important to make, what does it tell the audience?

This short (Nausea) follows a day in the life of a young girl who is struggling with a personal issue, but keeps this a secret from everybody else. It is a tale of an adolescent in trouble told through her own words and point-of-view.

 What inspires you to do what you do?

Goya, Turner, Rothko, Freud, Nietzsche, Kafka, Carver, Dylan, Morrissey, Murnau, Bresson, Bergman, Antonioni, Kieslowski. Great art inspires me.

What do you think about short films in general? How do people relate to it around you?

I grew up watching cinema in a short film festival near my hometown, I later went on to write and direct three shorts, I am now starting a research project on the short fiction film: I believe this illustrates how the short-film form has a fundamental role of my life.