STOP10: 'The Path' by Jeanne Labrune

The Path is the newest French film by writer-director Jeanne Labrune, best known for Sand and Blood, which screened in Cannes in the Un Certain Regard section at the 1988 Cannes Film Festival. It has been several years since her last film, Special Treatment and The Path clearly marks her return from a long spiritual and emotional journey as Camille seeks answers about the world and her place in it.

This film spins the curious tale of Camille, who arrives in Cambodia on a Catholic mission. Every morning she walks along a river towards Angkor Wat, encountering a Khmer man, Sambath. This ritual becomes established and we see how their two worlds collide.
This film screened at the Cambodia International Film Festival 2018, and we were able to get a few words from its producer, Catherine Dussart.

How did the story for The Path take shape?

The Path was adapted from a book written by a french author Michel Huriet. Originally the action is set in Japan.

Did you have any filmic inspirations to draw from when making this film?

The director Jeanne Labrune totally reinvented the story and when we decided to shoot the film in Cambodia she totally rewrote the script to pay  a homage to Cambodia people and culture and to evoke its painful history.

What was the most challenging aspect of this film?

The most challenging was  the heat during the shooting.
How much of the production involved Cambodians and did you get much support from the Cambodian Film  Commission?

We had a great help from CFC and from Bophana Centre. We could shoot in the wonderful site of Angkor and find the perfect location in the abandoned church of Ta Om.
The film could not have been made in better conditions than in Cambodia. The team was fantastic, extremely professional and devoted to the film. We had a small crew as our budget was tight.
Where will the film go after the Cambodian Film Festival?
The very next screening for the film is next week in Richmond Festival in Virginia USA.

Interview by Rifyal Giffari

Check out the other 9 films in our STOP10 list of Cambodian films from CIFF 2018.
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