Behind this short film, which oscillates between film and documentary, we find Marin Troude, a young French director based between Paris and Los Angeles. And during an interview, he was able to talk to us a little more in depth about his creation.
How did you come up with the idea of making this film?
Everything happened a bit by chance, we improvised a lot with Pablo. I followed my instinct and he trusted me… The shoot was not supposed to go like this at all at the start. In the beginning, I wanted to deal with the subject of addiction, all mixed with very beautiful skate scenes, but I especially wanted to focus on his past, his career as a skater, his inner demons and his old addictions. All told in an interview as the plot of the film. When we first met on the street, I remember offering him a cigarette, and instead of saying “no thank you” like everyone else, he said “no, I can’t”. . At that moment, I saw something strong in his eyes, like a touching sadness, a heavy past to bear that was seething and that he had contained within him for a long time… It was on that day that it all started, I I then asked his permission to dig into his past and tell his story through this film together, and he agreed. A week later, I rented a camera in San Francisco and the shooting started…
Skateboarder Pablo Carranza takes drugs while filming. Wasn’t it too difficult to see him dive back and film these scenes?
In order not to go all over the place during filming, we put a strategy in place to try to “channel and structure” the scenes. We then split the shooting into two parts: during the day, we filmed skate scenes, and in the evening, when night fell, we tried to do cinema scenes in the streets of SF, then we shot the most possible interviews at his apartment. But the days passed, the skate scenes were very beautiful, but Pablo couldn’t manage to give me a single good sincere interview by confiding in the camera. One evening, about 4-5 days after the start of filming, he confided in me off camera and told me that he might have a solution to his blockage, which had become a major concern for the film. He then offered me to take drugs again in front of the camera, just for one scene, to maybe achieve the sincere film that we wanted from the beginning together. At the time, I said to myself that it was almost not necessarily a bad idea… that it was probably more interesting to speak and to really show things without lying or deception, to treat the subject in a raw and radical way, rather than suggesting addiction without really showing it throughout the film. I accepted, and that day, the filming then took on a whole new dimension… At the time, I thought I knew what I was talking about, I thought I understood what addiction was, but in reality I wondered. realized later that I didn’t know much about it… At the time, when we filmed these scenes, I didn’t really realize what we were really doing, that we had perhaps exceeded the limits, opened a dark door in him which could make him plunge back at any moment. During the shooting, I was so focused on the film, that I almost forgot the reality and the impact that this project could then have on our lives… but especially on his. So it was almost suddenly that I wanted a lot. It was very difficult to edit the film afterwards, especially these drug scenes, because I think I must have some responsibility in this story. Although he is master of his decisions, the director must, in my opinion, always impose limits on his actors and on himself. I learned that through this movie. Filming was in 2015, and I think, looking back, I was probably a bit young when I shot this film. It took me a while to understand the subject I was really dealing with.
Did you encounter any difficulties during the filming?
Yes enormously, it was a very complicated shoot because I asked him to shoot every day over a very short period and that tired him a lot. As on all shoots, we experienced failures and very beautiful moments. The biggest difficulty was, I think, having always been in permanent doubt, and having to ask Pablo all the time to do his best, while trying to preserve the trust he placed in me. I played on a very fine limit because this shoot was also an introspection for him. My constant requests affected his moods a lot, and I never knew if he would continue filming the next day. Not having a script written and having to rework the script every night according to the scenes of the day was quite complicated to manage too. We slept little, we got up every morning at 5 a.m. to shoot at sunrise… Pablo didn’t like that at all, but he held on until the end. I am so proud of him, for all the efforts he has made to complete this project.
Your best moments during the filming?
When we had a nice skate or movie scene. At that moment, we looked at each other and we knew that we were making a very beautiful film, or at least that mattered to us. We were proud of what we were accomplishing together. Sometimes he had an idea of tricks in mind that he had wanted to do for a long time, and we came back to the spot every day for him to try again and again, relentlessly. When he finally succeeded after 50 tries, we exploded with joy together in a common madness, as if to relieve the pressure… On such a difficult shoot, small victories are just as important as big ones. We really need it to go to the end, it’s almost vital not to give up and stay the course in the difficulty.
Have other skate movies inspired you?
Of course, at the time I really liked the short films of Sébastien Zanellla on Desillusion Magazine, especially the portrait “Destroying By Example” on Erik Ellington which inspired me a lot. I also liked “Kids” by Larry Clark, and like many skateboarders “Lord of Dogtown” by Catherine Hardwicke and Stacy Peralta. In terms of raw skateboarding, nothing to see, but I was completely a fan of the Baker 3 when I was a teenager. I watched it over and over again, like glued to my TV for hours, then I went skating…!
Your film is also a message of prevention against drugs and addiction, can you tell us a little more??
I am very happy to present Lost In Carranza to you because this film means a lot to me and I very sincerely hope that it will touch you too. But if he can above all transmit a useful message by warning the youngest of the dangers of addiction or by helping certain people to get out of drugs, that would undoubtedly be my greatest victory. I promised Pablo that we would make a useful film, not just an unhealthy, intimate and voyeuristic project. It was very important for both of us to try to send a positive message, or at least to leave an open end, suggesting that he has a chance of getting through this. I had so much footage, that I think I could have edited just about any ending for the movie…but making a dark ending where you come out more depressed than before didn’t really interest me. not. Above all, I wanted to send a useful message and try to encourage the viewer to think… I hope I have succeeded.
How is Pablo? Is he still clean, has he found sponsors?
Today, Pablo is doing very well. He is completely sober and has not touched drugs for almost 3 years. He resumed his studies shortly after filming to try to work in social work afterwards. Today, in the future, he would like to give skateboarding lessons to young people in San Francisco and why not help the most disadvantaged or underprivileged during his free time. I am very proud of him and I think he will succeed in achieving his dreams. As for his pro career, I promised him to send the film to all possible sponsors to help him as much as I can. We already have a touch with Thrasher, they really liked the project and its story… I hope it will materialize for him.
Upcoming film projects? in the world of skateboarding or otherwise?
Thanks to Lost In Carranza, a few production companies have contacted me to offer me funding for my next fiction… I am in the middle of writing at the moment. I do not hide from you that after such a project having had so many repercussions on my life and my transition to adult life, I think today I want to do something completely different for my next film. I think I’m going to get away from the skateboarding world a bit, so why not find it better later. But before I retire for a while, I still have one last little surprise for the public for