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Synopsis

Léa is a French-Argentinian artist living in New York. She reunites with three old friends in Tuscany, where the four of them studied together with a very special maestro ten years before. They became writers, but she chose a different artistic path and is the most successful of the group. As they are all re-encountering, an incident pushes Léa to face her difficult past and to make a life-changing decision.

Writer and producer statement

La casa di pietra, location
Pic by S. Ferraro

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Ricercare is my second short movie as a screenwriter, actress and producer; it was shot in Italy and is a French-Italian coproduction.

I wrote Ricercare at a very special moment of my life: I had been living in San Francisco for 4 years when I lost my job and work visa without any notice and I had to go back to Europe. When I arrived to France, I wrote a script about this traumatic experience, a satire, and then life happened: I learned that Abraham Heisler, a great American director from the same San Francisco collective of filmmakers I was part of, was going to be in Tuscany for two months to teach filmmaking. We both wanted to work together – I offered him to make a short movie in Italy. This is how the beautiful adventure of Ricercare all started.

My proposition to Abe was the following: instead of writing the script and finding the resources to produce it, I offered him to do the reverse. We could see what resources, actors, locations were available on-site and then I would write a script according to those restrictions. I had a basic storyline I wanted to develop, on which Abe and I agreed, but he trusted me completely with the writing.

I was born in France, my father’s family is Italian, so is my last name, and my mother’s family is from Spain. I have always been closer to my Spanish roots, I spent all my summers as a kid in Spain, I speak the language fluently (I am bilingual), unlike Italian, that I got to learn as I was making my movie, I studied Spanish at college, and my Spanish grand-mother was one of the most influential persons in my life. This first chapter of RicercareBlack Print Tiger Shirt T Black Topman x1XFqnw5 is about re-encounters, as I was myself reconnecting with my Italian roots and learning how to speak this beautiful language I had always understood, but never really spoken.

I once told a friend from Buenos Aires that I had most likely been Argentinian in a past life, and here was his beautiful answer: “no, nena, sos argentina en esta vida” (“no, you’re Argentinian in this life”). I have strong links with Argentina: its people, its music, its language, its dance, its history deeply resonate with me. Léa, the protagonist, is French & Argentinian, she is the daughter of a desaparecido, and it was important for me to suggest it in a subtle way, with the reserve of an author who has not lived this tragic episode of the history of Argentina.

This first chapter of Ricercare revolves around simple questions: how can you move forward beyond a certain point in your adult life when your past has a huge question mark? How do you deal with disappearance rather than death? How can you reconcile with your painful family history, and all the more when it is directly linked to the tragic history of your own country? How can you forgive?

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