Europe Film Festival U.K. spoke exclusively with Martina Riu

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Hi, first of all, congratulations, you are one of the winners of the Europe Film Festival U.K. What do you feel? 

Thank you! I am very excited about it. I didn’t believe that “Chez vous” could get so far and I am so happy to see that people around the world are liking it! 

What gave you the inspiration to write and direct this story? 

The play “Migrando” by Carla Bianchi gave me the idea to make this movie. At first, I wanted to do a romance between an Italian girl and a French guy in Paris, but after I saw her play, I immediately changed my mind. Like Carla, I realized that I had the opportunity to make people aware about something important, a powerful tool to express my point of view about society to a large audience. So I thought about some people that I knew back when I was a waitress in Italy. I never thought about it, but I realized that some of them had very interesting stories to tell. That’s how the very first pitch of “Chez vous” was born. It was inspired by the life of two of my colleagues. 

What was the most important lesson you had to learn that has had a positive effect on your film? How did that lesson happen? 

The most important lesson that I learned is that confidence is the key to everything. When I first started writing this movie, I didn’t have confidence at all, and that affected me, my work, and my team. I wasn’t sure about where I was headed, so I wasn’t a good leader either. It’s normal to have doubts, to think that you’re not good enough and that you’re doing all wrong. But you have to force yourself to turn off those negative thoughts and finish what you started, always. To believe in yourself, even if it sounds fake, even if you are the only one. I forced myself to be confident until I became it for real, and that gave me the strength to finish my work and to submit it to you. I learned that confidence is extremely important in life and especially when you are about to make a movie.