Interview with Mira Fornay

Interview with Mira Fornay
8. February 2024

Mira Fornay, who has made four feature films and fourteen shorts, studied directing at FAMU in Prague and at the National Film and Television School in Beaconsfield near London. Her second feature film, My Dog Killer, received the Tiger Award at the 2013 IFF Rotterdam at the national Slovak film awards, the Sun in a Net Awards, where it received accolades in categories including Best Screenplay, Best Director, and Best Film. It was also Slovakia’s official entry for the Oscars. After winning The Grand Prix of the Generation Kplus International Jury for the Best Film with her film She – Hero last year, Fornay is returning to Berlin with her new project Twist the Rabbit, which she will present at the Berlinale Co-Production Market 2024 within the Berlinale Directors section.

What is your new film about, and what inspired you to make it?

It is a dystopian love story that takes place in 2052. The main character, Leila, is a young lawyer who fights for freedom of choice. Freedom is a basic human need that we often take for granted in Europe. My new film will be about ordinary people without any celebrity status who have decided to live differently. However, it will be a drama, and the main character has a very disarming sense of humor. It is also my most personal film.

Your previous film She – Hero had a more realistic style and storyline, but Twist the Rabbit is set in the future. What motivated this decision?

I’m determined to maintain authenticity, as I’ve done in my previous films, considering it a crucial aspect of authorial cinema. Much like my earlier works, Twist the Rabbit will embrace a minimalistic and visually dynamic cinematic approach. The choice to explore a futuristic setting was deliberate. In my view, while there may be advancements in technology affordable to the richer classes, the essence of humanity will not change significantly in the next 28 years. If we fail to change our behavior towards the planet and fail to implement effective environmental protection laws, the prospects for the future appear bleak. However, I still believe that positive changes can be made NOW.

What are your expectations for participating in the Co-production Market?

Viktor Schwacz (producer, CINEART TV Prague): Mira has a clear vision and a compelling thematic core with great co-production potential. Consequently, we are optimistic about connecting with suitable co-production partners, as well as exploring opportunities with world sales and film distribution partners.

Mira Fornay: As an author, I am immensely grateful for this nomination, and I have high hopes it will significantly expedite the financing of this film, possibly even more so than my previous projects, even within our domestic film industry.

Twist the Rabbit
Berlinale Co-Production Market – Berlinale Directors

Genre: dystopian love story
Expected release: 2025
Director & Scriptwriter: Mira Fornay
Production: MIRAFOX (SK), CINEART TV Prague (CZ)
Producers: Mira Fornay, Viktor Schwarcz, Natália Pavlove
Synopsys: 2052: Leila must “gain” a child. If Leila fails, she’ll lose her freedom and the opportunity to be with her love Gábor.