Interview by Rafy Mediavilla, w/ Luli Gerbase, director & screenwriter of the Sci-Fi movie, “The Pink Cloud”. #ThePinkCloud
Now Avilable In Select Theaters, Including The Quad Cinema in NYC and The Laemmle Royal in LA, & On Digital/VOD March 1, 2022.
Life changes on a dime when a toxic and mysterious pink cloud appears across the globe, forcing the world indoors immediately and indefinitely. In Brazil, Giovana (Renata de Lélis) finds herself stuck in her apartment with a man she just met (Eduardo Mendonça). But their carefree one-night stand grows into a years-long relationship complicated by a child and increasingly divergent worldviews as they try to imagine a future from the depths of a potentially never-ending lockdown. Written in 2017 and shot in 2019, this stunning, slow-burn sci-fi debut from writer/director luli Gerbase is both an eerily prescient reflection of our reality and a cathartic exploration of hope and despair, love and fear, and the boundlessness and limits of our ability as humans to adapt.
How did the story come about? What prompted you to write the story?
I wanted to tell a story about this couple that had just met, and their idea was having just one night together and suddenly this toxic being called comes and creates this sort of forested marriage that they must deal with and see how they react differently to this cloud and to their confinement. And what she wants and what he wants. And they don’t want the same thing and how they try to adapt to this situation together. We follow the conflict of them being stuck and having different notions of happiness and freedom and goals in life.
Did they [the actors] had a complete idea what the story was going from the beginning of shooting?
Yes, they knew everything, and that’s I think she even read the first draft that was like one hundred and fifty pages. she knew the different versions. She was on set, and she was like no, I said this. But like in the first version, it was different. She knew everything. they both knew, and when we did the rehearsals, they knew each other from other plays that they have done together, other movies. I knew them. And so, I did my first short film ever when I was in university and not these shorts with me too. And they knew each other, so it was good having is this intimacy. we could really, work together and be open and try many things. And they knew it was a difficult task that they had because the film is on them almost all the film.
Did Renata give you some input on where she saw the story and the characters going?
Yes, for sure, it was very like we were discussing the characters together. I think Renata was struggling a bit on the beginning where, she’ll find makes him cake for his birthday, and she was like, Why would she cook for him? They don’t even know each other, and you know, I’m still myself. You know, like being the perfect wife were like, OK, but if it’s his birthday, like, you can do the cake, you know, once. It was funny. Like, some moments were more uncomfortable to her and so moments she really related to the character. It was very interesting, an interesting journey. And one thing that was amazing for us is that I really asked my aide to shoot almost chronologically. That was very important for them. It does not, of course, does not mean logically or the stamps. But like now we are shooting the first week, now the first year. Now, three years now, five years. So that was amazing because then we could feel the process and the few the passing of time
Something I found interesting. It’s the way stuff comes the outside into the house with the tube. How did that specific idea come about?
Yeah! I wanted to focus on the characters and to focus on them and how they react and and make it intimate. I did go on to explore the scientific aspects of it was not interesting for me, but I was like, OK, I just have to explain how they eat, you know how they get food. I put this like bizarre thing on the window and the food comes from it. And I know it’s not logical. Like some people say, that makes no sense.
But like, I don’t care if it makes a lot of sense, practically because. And it was I was like joking with our delivery systems and all because it is bizarre. Like I type pizza on the computer and 40 minutes later, a pizza comes to my door. It just kind of magical our delivery systems anyway. It was like a joke with that. But I think it was the only thing that I felt that I had to show some way
How do you expect people to process this story when they see it? [Taking into considering the simulates of the story with the status of the pandemic]
Yeah, it is bizarre. Like, for example, now I was going to go to L.A. for the premiere and in cinemas there and LA now only Chrome and everything is crazy. It’s all electric. I’m not going on. I’m getting to this plane. But yes, it’s like it’s never ending and it’s bizarre. I hope it ends soon. But. I think, yeah, I think people could relate to the film in Sundance last January, and now we are in January again and we are still in this situation.
I understand that some people don’t even want to watch things with the confinement and pandemic. But I think people who are watching and opening themselves to that experience, we they can relate to their characters. And personally, I like when I can see myself on the screen some way. And many people have said, Oh, it’s like online, People are saying it’s very weird, but in some way, it was therapeutic for me. Like, it’s helped me process some things and help me think about myself and the pandemic I’m happy that I’m sad. Of course, that often exists, but is always good to have a film that you can relate yourself to.
See the full interview: