Renata Lučić is a Croatian film director and screenwriter. She graduated Film and TV directing at the Academy of Dramatic Arts, Zagreb. She directed several short films (Fifth Floor on the left) , documentary films (Particle 81/5; As far as our feet take us) and music videos. She is part of a production duo More-Magnets.
NY Elite: Congratulations on being an ISC finalist. What does it mean for your work to be selected at the International Screenwriting Competition in New York?
Renata Lučić: Thank you. It means a lot to me and my production More-Magnets. We are looking forward to make this movie and getting support from ISC is a big push for us. It means that the story is recognized by important names and it has a potential to be a globally important story and movie.
NY Elite: Can you tell us about the work that you participated with at ISC? What is the story about?
Renata Lučić: “2000” is a drama which depicts a carefree childhood, but also what happens when a child encounters injustice and betrayal for the first time. The main character of the film is Nena and the film is set in Slavonia. It takes place at the turn of 1999 in 2000. The year 2000 signified a transition to something new and different to everyone, and was special in its own way, and for Nena it was a step into the real world which is often painful and carries its own hardships.
The idea for the film comes from my past. This is an event that has shaped me profoundly and that I still remember to the smallest detail today. From the feelings of pain, grief and helplessness to the great feeling of shame I had ever experienced by then. The emotions which accumulated on the first day of the year 2000, have certainly shaped me as a person and have determined my future path in life. That was the first time ever that I experienced injustice in my life, the first time that I felt shame in front of my family, the first time that I lost my temper and common sense, the first time that I hurt someone I loved and the first time that I lost my trust in someone.
NY Elite: Can you tell us yourself and your artistic talents?
Renata Lučić: I enrolled in the Academy of Dramatic Arts in Zagreb in 2015, to study Film and TV Directing. At the Academy, I made the documentary film “As Far As Our Feet Take Us”, which was shown at numerous festivals and premiered at Zagreb Dox in 2018. Then I made a short film “The Fifth Floor on the Left”, which had its premiere at one of the biggest world LGBTQ film festivals – Wicked Queer Boston Film Festival in 2019. After I finished the Academy I started to work a lot in the film and commercial industry. My friend Filip Filković and I founded our own film and video production More-Magnets based in Zagreb. We are doing short movies, documentaries, music videos, tv-series, commercials…there are a lot of projects going on at the moment. But somehow the best part of my job is that you are actually doing something that you truly love.
I love to write stories and scripts, but this is a thing that I’m doing in special moments of my life. For example sometimes I have a story in my head for more than a year but then I need to wait a moment to put that on the paper. Usually I’m doing this when I’m alone, somewhere out of my everyday life and my home, trying to dedicate my whole being to that story. But the thing that makes me happies is the day when we start shooting the project. I love when I see the energy and creativity of all my colleagues in one place focused only on one thing. That’s the most beautiful thing in making films.
NY Elite: What scripts have you written so far?
Renata Lučić: I wrote a few scripts for short movies, mostly all of them are my personal stories – from ”Please Mum, Not today” to ”Fifth floor on the left”. I also wrote a few scripts for documentaries – ”As far as our feet take as” and feature-length documentary ”A Year of Endless Days”. At the moment I’m writing my first feature film ”Ana”.
NY Elite: Top 3 favorite projects that you have been involved in?
Renata Lučić: ”The Last Well ” – short film by my colleague Filip Filković. ”Fifth floor on the left” – my short student film. And there are a few commercials that I made, for example ”Intimina – Ziggy Cup” commercial and ”Foreo BeUnique” commercial – those are projects where we all put a lot of creativity and hard work to make something unique and different, and something that we all were very proud of that we pushed the boundaries.
NY Elite: What type of scripts do you want to write in your career?
Renata Lučić: Generally, I’m more into personal stories. Also, I love to write about stories that aim to promote women’s and LGBTQ rights. I love to write about my life, about my childhood, about things that bothered me and things that have shaped me. Once a professor from the academy told me “before you point the camera at others, point it at yourself first”. So, at the moment I’m still making stories about my life, but I can see that easily I’m moving toward other people and stories. For example, my first feature movie ”Ana” is gonna be my first movie about something that I have not experienced and about someone I will build through the story.
NY Elite: As a writer, what is the most important aspect of building a character?
Renata Lučić: Building a character is the process of creating a fully complex and lifelike character within my fictional writing with the purpose of making readers invested in them and their life or journey. So the most important aspect is to create a background for the character, give your character strength and weaknesses and make the change your character undergoes in his or her personal journey.
NY Elite: What projects are you currently working on?
Renata Lučić: I’m writing a script for my feature film ”Ana” and also I’m in post-production of my feature-length documentary ”A Year of Endless Days”.
NY Elite: Do you express yourself creatively in any other ways?
Renata Lučić: I have a great passion for photography. I’m doing this as a hobby, nothing professionali. Photography is my way of taking a creative break from directing and writing.
NY Elite: What advice would you give to someone who wants to have a career in filmmaking/writing?
Renata Lučić: I’m not good at giving advice, but I always say: ”It doesn’t matter what you create, if you have no fun.”