Rising star: Carla Simón, movie director

Carla Simón, director of  ‘Summer 1993’. Photo: Mariona Batllés

Young film director Carla Simón (Barcelona, 1986) was completely overwhelmed by the unanimous critical acclaim, the public’s enthusiastic reactions and the many festival prizes for Summer 1993 (original title: Estiu 1993), her first long motion picture.

Hailed as one of the big revelations of the year, she was praised for her great respect for emotions, the way she featured landscape as the central figure and her coaching of the actors to show just enough to become unforgettable. The movie is about the experiences of six-year-old Frida (Laia Artigas) who, after her mother’s death, is sent to her uncle’s family to live with them in the countryside, where she finds it hard to forget her mother and adapt to her new life.

Carla Simón directing Laia Artigas

Simón’s success story started in London, where she studied at the London Film School. There she made a short film about two children who found their dead granny. The theme inspired the director to dig deeper, as she found that the most universal feelings are what you have in front of you: emotions, landscape, human inheritance. Another incentive to explore this theme was the fact that Simón herself became an orphan when she was just six years old.

The idea was to incorporate into the storyline all the experiences of the loss of her parents and the incredible rollercoaster a child’s life can turn into when it has to begin a new life amidst near strangers facing an uncertain future. In order to convey the right sense of grief Frida was facing Simón read many books about the psychology of children. So silence as well as heartfelt crying play an important role in the movie.

There is much more to tell about the tender film of Summer 1993, but maybe you just have to watch the trailer and get the feeling of this motion picture with Laia Artigas, Bruna Cusí and David Verdaguer.

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