Madeleine N. and Guy Stephens’s short, ‘Cordelia‘ (The Sisterhood K.), is a fashion film based on the novels of William Shakespeare and Dostoevsky, and explores the theme of patricide through the verses and phrases of these great masterpieces. 

What is your film about?

Cordelia‘ is a fashion short film inspired by Shakespeare’s ‘King Lear‘ and Dostoevsky’s ‘Brothers Karamazov‘ and the themes of patricide and family conflict that these two works have in common. The film is also partially inspired by Dostoevsky’s ‘The Double‘.

Lear, the ruler of ancient Britannia has three daughters Goneril, Regan and Cordelia his youngest. He will die as victim of Goneril and Regan’s cruelty and adulatory behaviour loosing his precious Cordelia, the only daughter who sincerely loves him.

The work is presented as a sort of literary parallel between King Lear characters and the protagonists of The Brothers Karamazov. Cordelia often speaks through the quotes of Alyosha Karamazov, the good brother and Goneril and Regan. The evil sisters, speak through the quotes of Ivan Karamazov, Smerdjakov Karamazov, The Devil and other negative characters in the novel. This literary ”escamotage” is applied to all the protagonists.

What are the main topics raised by the story?

Family conflict, patricide, abandonment.

What is your credo as a filmmaker?

To be guided by passion and humility.

Madeleine Nieddu Fresi and Guy Stephens

Who is the target audience of your film?

Our film is suited for an audience old enough to understand Shakespeare and Dostoevsky.

Can you share a funny or interesting story about the making of the film?

We shot in Sardinia at very dramatic locations, such as hills covered in enormous granite formations and swamps dominated by reddish weed and mosquitos. Mother Nature is one of the main protagonists of our work and she showed up in many forms during the filming such as windstorms, rain, super thick fog. But it was beautiful even to film with such technical difficulties.

Why did you decided to submit your short film to the Short Film Corner?

To be in Cannes and experience realities like the Marche’ Du Film and the SFC represents a precious opportunity for every creative mind.