It was our pleasure to speak to Filipp Romanychev, the director of "The Death of a Government Clerk". The film is about an arrogant sailor who is bothering the Minister of Health by trying to help, but the situation keeps getting worse. The story is based on a play by Anton Chekhov.
What was the inspiration behind the making of your film? The inspiration was a classical play “The death of a government clerk” written by Anton Chekhov. Due to the fact that it is very complicated to find a great screenwriter in Russia, I decided to use a classical play, but the setting is nowadays. The classical play gave me a great base for the script and helped me to express the idea of a boot licking relationship between ordinary people and celebrities. What is the most challenging aspect of working in this particular genre? The most challenging aspect is to make a comedy a part of the story. If the logline that I wrote is not funny, that means there will be no comedy in the story. As soon as I think the logline is funny, I am testing it on several friends and relatives. If they find it funny, then I have a basis for a comedy movie. When did you realize that you wanted to work in media and make films and what was the first film project that you created as a director? My first project I shot in 2006, when I was 12 years old. It was during the summer in the countryside and that was the year when most of my friends didn’t come to the countryside for the whole summer. There was only me and my other friend Vitalik. We were bored and one of us suggested to make a movie with toys, that I had. The story was about British soldiers who were sailing a boat to fight in World War II, but they got crashed on an island with giant insects. We made a movie and we shot it on the phone. But then I was pushed by my family to become a lawyer, but eventually I realized that I want to be a director and me and my wife started making video clips with the music I wrote back in the days. Then we shot a short film “Our balcony”(2019) about domestic violence in Russia. How did you choose the cast and the crew of the film and what was the most challenging aspect of production? To find the cast and the crew was easy, because I worked with the cast and crew on numerous projects before we made “The Death of a Government Clerk”.(2022). We did another comedy with the same cast “Rendez-vous”(2021) and it was similar in regards of style and camera work as “The Death of a Government Clerk”(2022). The most challenging thing was the fact that it was snowing for almost the whole day, while we were shooting. Nevertheless, we made the movie and it looks great! What genre of film making fascinates you as a director and which genres do you prefer to work on? Almost every genre fascinated me, unless it is a musical or an art house movie. I love comedies, adventures, thrillers, action, drama, horror. In each genre I can find something that inspires me. I would like to work in such genres as comedies, adventure, sci-fi, action and thriller. How can cinema change the world and have an impact on society? Cinema can explore different problems that modern society has. And I think it should. It doesn’t mean that cinema should be a lecture if what is wrong and what is right. But it should make a certain analysis on issues, that a society is trying to solve. In that case, comedies and horror movies are the best genre for that type of analysis. What is your next film project as a director? My next project as a director is an experimental comedy “Tripping with Fibi”. It’s about several students, who are faking a travel show in LA, so they can stay in the US and apply for O1 visa. It’s a live movie, that’s why it is experimental. By saying live movie I mean that besides the “fake episodes” of a travelling show there is also a back story, which is filmed in live format. And there is also a story of characters, which is shot as a movie. It’s a mixture of a movie, live blog and a TV show.