Breakfast with Nor Tarva Goji [Christmas Roast]
Interview with Alexsander Baghdasaryan, director of Nor Tarva Goji [Christmas Roast]
Firstly, could you explain the reference to a Christmas roast?
We’ve made the translation more comprehensible for English speaking countries and this is how we had the Christmas Roast. In Armenian reality it is a suckling pig, which is served on a large dish without cutting. But it is also one of Aram’s performances, which he is asked to show over and over again, so that he’s immensely tired of it, though that doesn’t help a bit.
The film is really centred around Aram’s quirks and personality. Is his character based on someone you know?
No, there’s no prototype to Aram. Well, there might be somewhere, but we have not met in person. The important thing here is that quite a gifted personality does a completely unrelated job.
Did you want to make a point about bailiffs and loan sharks in Armenia? What do you hope the audience will take from it?
I believe this issue is not restricted to my country alone. And I also believe that it’s the entire system and not the compulsory enforcement service specifically that puts a person in front of a dilemma, and not every person is able to see human tragedy behind the strict letter of the law.
Tell us more about the casting process.
It goes without saying that the choice of an actor who would impersonate Aram was the toughest part. I’d known Areg for a long time and remembered his parodies, which he performed masterfully, therefore the choice came somewhat naturally. The role seemed to be tailored for him.
What sort of genres and themes would you like to work on next?
I was thinking of another short one before I switch to full length. I can’t mention any genre preferences since I am not conservative when it comes to cinematography. To have a good story – that is important, so I don’t care if it’s a comedy, a drama or a western.
Are there any works of art or films that have inspired you?
Quite a few. For instance, I love what the Coen brothers do, the way they combine various genres and narrate stories. I can list a number of directors and films that inspire me.
Would you say that the short film format has given you any particular freedom?
I believe it has, especially as it’s a debut. I had complete creative freedom during the shooting process.
Nor Tarva Goji [Christmas Roast] is part of International Competition I4.