Ivana Mladenović completes Ivana the Terrible in time for Locarno
by Ştefan Dobroiu
- The director’s second feature stars both her and her relatives, and is based on real-life events
After directing one of the very few local LGBT features, Soldiers. Story from Ferentari [+see also:
interview: Dawid Ogrodnik
interview: Ivana Mladenovic
film profile], Serbian-Romanian director Ivana Mladenović has completed her second feature, Ivana the Terrible [+see also:
film profile], which has recently been announced as one of the pictures in the Filmmakers of the Present competition at the upcoming Locarno Film Festival. The film is a co-production between Romania’s microFilm and Serbia’s Dunav 84.
The screenplay, written by Mladenović together with Adrian Schiop (who co-wrote and played a fictionalised version of himself in the director’s first film) centres on Ivana (Mladenović), a Serbian actress who works and lives in Bucharest. Health problems prompt her to go and spend her summer on the other bank of the Danube, in her native town of Klodovo. Various challenges here and rumours about her having a love affair with a teenager will bring her to the brink of a nervous breakdown.
Interestingly, in telling her story about a woman who doesn’t feel at home on either shore of the Danube, the director has invited family and friends to play fictionalised versions of themselves: her parents Gordana and Miodrag Mladenović, brother Kosta Mladenović, and grandmother Zivka Sorejevic all play important parts in Ivana the Terrible.
“My film is the result of a personal crisis I faced during the summer of 2017,” Mladenović explains in a press release. “I invited the real protagonists, friends and relatives, to re-live in front of the camera, as fictionalised characters, the events of that summer and the emotions they generated. All of the ‘actors’ rehearsed for months, and a process that started out as a sort of therapy suddenly became a film. And, as sometimes happens in our personal histories, the repetition of a dramatic situation suddenly becomes a farce. Or, in our case, a comedy,” the directors adds.
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