Maybe you've heard of it. Maybe you have not. CENTRUM is Denmark's most current youth series. Last section is out, and ours hammered necklace constitutes a symbol of the four protagonists' fantastic spring and summer during the Corona crisis. The series is for good reason compared to the Norwegian series SHAME, and behind it is the creative director, Jonas Risvig. With this interview we are happy to give an insight into the director's thoughts behind the series, the relationship between himself and the actors and much more.
Jonas Risvig talks about the collaboration with Cuff Copenhagen:
“We had to weave the stories of the four main characters together in the last episode and the young people already knew Cuff. WE discussed for a long time how to tie a knot on the story and then the girls suggested that you could let the main characters buy a piece of jewelry that would forever connect them and remind them that they will once and for all be the CENTER of the earth. I was so lucky myself to get a piece of jewelry so even though only four are shown in episode 22 of the series, I still have the latter. Somehow it is our trophy that we did this together and will forever have something very special between us. ”
How has it been to record CENTER during Corona?
“It has been surreal to experience how many young people have lacked a portrayal fiction project like CENTER, which does everything but pack the young people's lives into an adult world. That it should flourish in the midst of the corona crisis has been surreal, as all colleagues around me have stood still. On paper, our series should not have been possible, yet I am now left with the most important work of my career as a director. Somehow, I have begun to believe that times of crisis feed and give birth to new projects that require innovation and ingenuity to survive. We had nothing when we recorded the first episode apart from a couple of cameras, a team of volunteers and my phone book with Alex Høgh and Thor Farlov's names in it. It should turn out to be enough to make the team believe in the vision. After that, we had to take the young people with us on the carriage, and they came quickly when they noticed that the senders at CENTRUM were not grown men in suits. ”
You may be the person we have come across who has managed to develop the most during Corona - can you try to put some words into it?
“If I forget for a moment that I'm making movies. Then my greatest happiness is to disappear into my imagination. My mother taught me that as a child, by always letting me leave the table when I got a thought or spotted something on a bookshelf. I spent so many hours forgetting time and place and exploring attics, basements, or the woods near our house. As you get older, this free space is removed for all sorts of reasons. Today I own a beautiful office on Værnedamsvej and I feel cool when I buy an americano at a sidewalk cafe, but when the corona hit, it dawned on me how many of these imaginative free spaces I have actually moved away from. CENTER is my latest discovery when it comes to universes and fantasy worlds that I can disappear into. Somehow, in the corona crisis, I have learned to let others participate in my fantasy world and I intend to continue to do so forever. I made that discovery this spring, and it is guaranteed that people have been extremely exposed to my name. It has gone strong. ”
It's probably a very atypical way to record when it's over such a long time. How has it been?
“Usually we record a TV series for a continuous period of a small month. CENTRUM is occupied continuously over 3 months, which gives a completely unique authenticity and timeliness. We made it possible for ourselves to let the series follow the corona crisis and implement, for example, press conferences and societal changes. That way, we made the characters and the universe enormously alive for the audience. In addition, we were able to rewrite and invent the scripts on the set and the days before the recordings, because we had breaks between the recordings. It also gave the young people time to immerse themselves and reflect, and at the same time it proved to be ingenious in terms of keeping momentum and including the target group in the development of the scripts. We simply asked boys and girls from all over the country to provide input and help write the episodes while we shot. It was really an inspiring way to work. ”
Has it been challenging to collaborate with the young actors who may not have the vast experience in a setup like yours?
“Yes, but only because it takes hard work to make them so confident that they dare to tell me when my script is bad. I always consider myself the lowest in the hierarchy in any creative space I step into. That way, I show people how respect should be created. Through hard work and by mutual understanding. By that I mean that despite the young people's lack of experience in fiction, we managed to become such good friends that they were eventually able to turn any line into the language that their generation understands. A language that people my age will never master working in. In addition, it should be mentioned that Erik, Martha, Anemone and Silje - in my eyes - are natural talents. They will have a much bigger career than myself if they dare to believe in the imagination and not hide it away, as I did. ”