A Look Into Bideshi Films
This week, we’re taking a look into Bideshi Films, a young collaborative between two filmmakers and friends of ours, Aude Leroux-Lévesque and Sebastian Rist. Having studied with Aude and Seb in Communication Studies at Concordia, we’ve had the opportunity to work together on several projects.
In third year film, Aude and myself directed a short fiction film, “Camille and the Musical Cherries”, which won best film at the 2007 YoungCuts Film Festival. A year later, Seb won Best Student Film at the Montreal World Film Festival for his film “This Little Piggy” as well as People’s Choice Award both at the 2008 YoungCuts Film Festival and the enRoute Film Festival. But that was school. Since then, we’ve worked on several project proposals and more than a few silly short videos, such as “Spaghetti Western”. Needless to say, we enjoy working together.
Bideshi Films was created in 2009 following a 10-month adventure in Bangladesh where Aude and Seb undertook the production of their first documentary film “Call me Salma”. The film explores the life of a transsexual girl, Salma, looking to understand her identity in a very traditional and religious society. The Film was financed by a French production company, Upside Télévision, and has since aired on French and South Korean TV, and screened at several festivals, such as Artivist Film Festival in Los Angeles, the Montreal World Film Festival, and the Warsaw Film Festival in Poland.
How did they get from making fiction films to completing an acclaimed documentary film? Passion and drive to discover other cultures! Aude has always been driven by art, but it’s particularly her need to contribute socially that has her discovering documentary film as the best of both worlds. Seb has a background of dragon boat racing and even took some time off from school to train in hopes of going to the Olympics, but the sport was not enough to quell his desire for creativity. He dropped everything and set his sights on making movies, fiction movies. Upon meeting Aude, they traveled together and discovered that the world was a far richer natural source of stories and fascinating people, that they set their sights on Bangladesh as the ideal spot for their first documentary film. Outcame “Jaago Kids” and “Call me Salma”.
Bideshi Films (a Bengali word for ‘foreigners’) is presently working on its second documentary film about a man that picks up fruit from Vancouver, then drives it up to Inuvik, an arctic town that would not have access to fresh fruits and vegetables otherwise. Upside Télévision is still producing.
We had the opportunity to sit down with Aude and Seb and talk about what they do. Have a look!
“Call me Salma” will be playing at Cinema Politica on the 29th of November at 8pm. Be sure to check out this film!