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Alma: the story of war photographer Robert Capa

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Alma: the story of war photographer Robert Capa it has been modified: 2013-06-11 di Benedict Flowers

One minute and seconds 43 masterful. In this small but intense space of time, the life of the legendary war photographer Robert Capa is narrated by his faithful squire: the photographic camera Leica III.

Powered by the award-winning production company in Brazil Sentimental Filme, The exciting movie Alma (in Italian, anima) - conceived by the F / Nazca Saatchi & Saatchi agency for the historic German camera brand - has won ten awards (including five golds and one silver at the Ibero-American Festival De La Publicidad, two golds at the Clio Awards , one at the One Show and one at the Wave Festival) and this June aspires to the coveted Cannes Lions in France and D&AD in the UK. Leica's first campaign in Brazil, the film is a launch action of its only concept store in the country, more precisely in São Paulo, and also features the new digital camera M Monochrom which produces photos in black and white, such as those taken by Capa.

Black and white is also the film advertising. Filmed in Cuba in places such as Havana and Bejucal, with a team that included professionals Brazilians and Cubans (the latter belonging to the famous film school of the island), the film captures the viewer with a language of documentary combined with engaging story. Everything is narrated in German, from the point of view of the photographic camera, with shots unconventional images and sometimes a po'storte or moves, as if the car was in the hand or on the neck of the photographer himself.

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The film's director and one of the stars of the Sentimental Filme, Vellas, who also collaborated on the script, explains that the start of the project was marked by a great coincidence. “I was reading the book Slightly Out of Focus, Capa's autobiographical diary, when the agency offered me three scripts for this campaign, and one of them was just about him. We evaluated what would be the best alternative, also in terms of
production, and decided for Capa as the protagonist. All these coincidences seemed like a signal to us, maybe they were, maybe not, who knows, ”says the director.

Between wars and loves, the life of the photographer - who together with Henri Cartier-Bresson, George Rodger and David "Chim" Seymour was one of the founders of the legendary Magnum agency - it was a real adventure; and this spirit has infected the production. “We shot the war scenes in the middle of a rice field, and the internal ones, in a house that seemed to fall over our heads. We woke up at five in the morning to visit the locations and cold showers became part of our routine. At that moment, feeling as uncomfortable as Capa might have found himself on the fronts seemed to be a good way to go. It was a choice to stay in hotels recently and spend the minimum necessary. All to try to enter the atmosphere in which he lived "Recalls Vellas.

The photo is signed by André Faccioli; sound design, from Kito Siqueira, from Satélite Áudio. “I talked a lot with Faccioli, so many ideas were born, but at the time of shooting we decided to change a lot of things. As the scenes were shot, we were more and more sure that the film had to be dirty, shaky, badly framed, looking weird. As for the audio, I think it's 50% of the story. The Kito is one of the best on the market, and when I called it, he was super excited and started bombarding me, no pun intended, with references to audio and music. The voiceover was recorded slowly, very whispered, low and delicate to counter the shootings "Says the director.

It's not nice to unveil the end of a movie, but in this case, unavoidable. “In the final sequence, we reproduce one of the last photos Capa took during the Indochina War, before stepping on a mine in 1954,” says Vellas. That is, the story does not have a happy ending, but it fascinates. "For us it is a great surprise and satisfaction that a dense film, with a relatively long duration for a commercial, is receiving so much recognition."

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The production house

In 11 years of activity, Sentimental Filme has become one of the most important advertising film production companies in Brazil. Winner of numerous national and international awards, including a Bronze Lion in Cannes, three Clio Awards and two One Show, the company also has a division that produces content for TV and internet, entertainment, interactive advertising, corporate communication and new media. Fiat, Ford, Panasonic, Volkswagen, Visa, Procter & Gamble and AB Imbev are some of its main customers.

The Director

Born in 1982, in Rio de Janeiro, Vellas (Felipe Vellasco) moved to São Paulo in 1995. Despite having studied marketing, goes to work in the creative sector of large agencies such as Ogilvy and Mather DM9DDB. After several years as an art director decides to change perspective and goes to work in production houses as art director and animation designer. Quickly begin to manage their own projects, for a few years even in pairs, to take care of only the direction of the film's live-actionper Sentimental Filmea from 2012.

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Robert Capa

"The greatest war photographer hated war", so informs the website of the Magnum agency, of which he was one of the founders in 1947. Born Andre Friedmann in Budapest in 1913 of Jewish parents, Robert Capa studied political science at the Deutsche Hochschule für Politik in Berlin. With the establishment of the Nazi regime in Germany, he moved to Paris in 1933. He achieved international recognition with photos from the Spanish Civil War: a photo of him of a mortally wounded soldier became symbolic. In 1938 he went to China and, a year later, he emigrated to the United States, to New York. As a correspondent in Europe, he photographed World War II, covering the landing of American troops at Omaha Beach on D-Day, the liberation of Paris and the Ardennes Offensive. On May 25, 1954, working for Life magazine in Thai-Binh, Indochina, he stepped on a mine and died. The French army posthumously awarded him the Croix de Guerre with the palm symbol. In his honor, the Robert Capa Gold Medal Award was created in 1955.

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