Dazed Digital

Moscow / Русский

Vasily Buylov

September 30, 2011

The up-and-coming experimental film director and writer of Meek Land discusses Russian cinema

  • Text by Kemal Tarba

Guest Feature by Dasha Abramova

Satellite Voices presents Moscow’s new monthly contributor - Dasha Abramova. Dasha’s column on Satellite Voices will feature young, up-and-coming representatives of Russian cinema industry and hottest film events taking place here in Moscow. Her first hero is a movie director and student of State Institute of Cinematography (VGIK) - Vasily Buylov.

Vasily always knew that sooner or later he will delve into the world of cinema, but his career path went through musical and literature education: before entering VGIK he studied at the Krasnoyarsk School of Music, and then at the Moscow’s Gorky Institute of Literature. Today, the writer of the Meek Land movie works with the film production company Sayanfilm, and tells Satellite Voices about Russian cinema in general and his own future plans.

Satellite Voices: So, tell us about your work…
Vasily Buylov: I have this work I find interesting "Meek Land", it’s a one-shot film (film captured by one shot, without any editing), produced in an amateur style. It is a work about the land plots in Moscow suburbia, and the way people are fighting madly for them and are willing to pay big money for pieces of land in the country where the population density is three persons per square kilometer.

In mid autumn there will be a VGIK Film Festival, and we are preparing a short film "Edge of Sounds", it is about a dancer and a piano tuner. Closer to the spring we will finish production of the second film, a 15-minute drama, "Down by the River".

SV: What does future hold for you?
Vasily Buylov: I'm finishing the scenario for a joint project of VGIK and Sayanfilm. It is the story of a lost continuity, lack of understanding between parents and children, people and nature. There are also many long-term creative projects - three full-length film scenarios that I'm working on. The first one is a story about a woman who appeared as a result of emancipation and feminism. The second film is based on a legendary journey of Gleb Travin, who in 1928 - 1931 traveled all over the Soviet Union on his bike: 85000 km in three years! And the last is a screen story – Gogol’s "The Portrait".

SV: What does Sayanfilm deal with?
Vasily Buylov: It’s a young film company, founded by three producers. For now the focus is mainly on the production of soundtracks for student films: live, not electronic, instrumental music. "Down the River" is the first film, in which Sayanfilm provides a full production cycle. We do not get profits yet, but just gaining experience. Currently working on several soundtracks for student films, and the number of clients is rising. Just finished working with Ivan Perekatov’s "Loss" and my film "Edge of Sounds".

SV: What do you think about the development of Russian cinema in general?
Vasily Buylov: I carefully track Russian cinema developments. Some people may call me an optimist, but I'm sure the movie business is developing in Russia and has good prospects. "Avatar" has collected more than $100 million dollars in Russia – this is what people voluntarily pulled out of their pockets and handed to the cashier. So, we need to create interesting films, address alerting issues. We have the greatest history, amazing culture, great art and incredible nature - where else but in Russia for cinematography to prosper?

SV: Which upcoming cinema events would you recommend to check out?
Vasily Buylov: The closest event outing of Zvyagintsev’s film "Elena". In my opinion (and not only mine), Zvyagintsev films possess the highest quality in Russia. It will showcase the good sides of the new Russian cinema and cultural arts. Actually, probably a lot of interesting things going on there, but I'm just very busy with production, so I do not know, alas, what's going on.

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