Interview with Jakub Viktorín

Interview with Jakub Viktorín
8. February 2024

Jakub Viktorín is a successful young Slovak producer and the chair of nutprodukcia, a company behind acclaimed films such as Victim (dir. Michal Blaško, 2022 Venice International Film Festival), Tony, Shelly and the Magic Light (dir. Filip Pošivač, 2023 Annecy International Film Festival), Love, Dad (dir. Diana Cam Van Nguyen, 2021 Locarno International Film Festival) or Solitude (dir. Ninna Pálmadóttir, 2023 Toronto International Film Festival). Viktorín, who has completed the Producers on the Move and EAVE programs, is also the founder and chair of the Visegrad Film Forum, an annual networking and educational event held each spring in Bratislava. The Berlinale festival will feature the premiere of the documentary I’m Not Everything I Want to Be, co-produced by him and directed by Klara Tasovská.

Why did you decide to get involved in this project? What made the offer attractive to you?

I decided to get involved in this project based on two key factors. Firstly, the previous works of producer Lukáš Kokeš and director Klára Tasovská were a major draw. Although our company does not typically focus on documentaries, the films created by Klára and Lukáš have inspired me to collaborate with them. Secondly, and just as importantly, the main protagonist and the film’s overarching theme were incredibly compelling. Libuše Jarcovjáková is an exceptional storyteller who delves into deeply personal, sometimes painful, yet universally relevant subjects. She addresses her rejection of motherhood, her abortion, the relationship with her parents, her search for solace and inner peace in the exoticism of the social periphery, the exploration of sexual identity, and coming to terms with her body’s inevitable aging. All these layers that make up the story told through a feature collage of photographs of our protagonist craft a unique film experience. It has the potential to resonate with audiences beyond the specific festival circuit, especially for those open to exploring new perspectives.

Why do you think Libuše Jarcovjáková is an interesting photographer and protagonist of the documentary?

She stands out as an interesting photographer primarily due to the compelling nature of her work, which resonates deeply with audiences, visitors to her exhibitions, and readers of her books. Klára selected her as the documentary’s protagonist largely because of Libuše’s life journey and its profound connection to her photography. A critical aspect of her appeal is the sincerity and openness that Libuše brings to both her life and her work.

The film largely depicts life in Prague behind the Iron Curtain in the 70s and 80s. How can such a film speak to contemporary Slovak and international audiences?

I believe the film’s central theme of embracing oneself, irrespective of conventional standards of beauty and success, will resonate significantly with the audiences. Libuše’s story is a testament to the bravery of putting your head above the parapet, of daring to be visibly and unapologetically different. It’s about the courage to be exposed to yourself, your family, and to the wider public.

You are also collaborating with producer Lukáš Kokeš on two other films, Summer School 2001 (dir. Dužan Duong) and Velvet Generation (dir. Ivana Hucíková). Can you tell us something about these projects and update us on their current state?

Regarding Summer School 2001, we have entered the post-production and editing phase. Depending on the progress of the creative process, viewers can expect to see this film either in the second half of this year or in 2025. As for Velvet Generation, we are in the process of securing finances for production, with pre-production already underway. Viewers will have to wait a bit longer for this film.

 

I’m Not Everything I Want to Be (more info here)
Berlinale Panorama

Screenings:
18 Feb / 16:30 / Kino International *Premiere
19 Feb / 21:30 / Cubix 8
20 Feb / 18:30 / Cubix 5
24 Feb / 22:00 / Zoo Palast 2