TBILISI: Tekla Machavariani from Nushi Film has been selected to participate in the 2020 Emerging Producers programme for documentary film producers, which kicks off at the 23rd edition of the Ji.hlava IDFF, taking place 24-29 October 2019. FNE spoke with Tekla Machavariani about the issues facing documentary film producers.
Tekla Machavariani is the founder of production company Nushi Film, which focuses on creative documentary, feature and short fiction films. Within the past years, Nushi Film has produced a diverse body of work, from the award-winning short Three Steps by Mari Gulbiani to the feature documentary Before Father Gets Back, and feature fiction Comets directed by Tamar Shavgulidze.
FNE: Why did you become a documentary film producer?
Tekla Machavariani: I am a documentary and feature film producer; however, one of my biggest and challenging films was a documentary, which was a four-year journey. This journey is what makes everything special during making a film, observing your characters you also learn something new in human relations, it's amazing how much your protagonists can teach you while you observe them.
FNE: What is the biggest practical issue that you have to deal with in your own country as a documentary film producer?
Tekla Machavariani: The biggest issue which we have to deal with in Georgia, as a producer, is that we have to learn it by ourselves. I didn't have a place where I could learn producing, so everything came with experience, and the help of our fellow producers, who were always ready to share their knowledge. I see now, that in Georgia producing has become much more popular and hopefully the new generation will have a chance to get the knowledge they need to start a crazy filmmaking journey.
FNE: What are the crucial topics that you explore as a documentary film producer?
Tekla Machavariani: Every topic can be interesting to explore; however, it's very important to me to tell stories, which will have a big impact on the society and breaking stereotypes.
FNE: Do you have a project that you are bringing to Emerging Producers in search of coproducers and partners?
Tekla Machavariani: Right now I am coproducing two very interesting projects. The authors are not Georgians, but they are telling stories from Georgia, so this is also something very interesting for me, to explore my country with foreign directors, who always give me other perspectives on something that is so familiar to me. I have to mention that to coproduce these films we have to be able to find money in Georgia, and right now it's not easy for us. Hopefully, the National Film Center will create a coproduction competition for Documentary films as well, because there is huge potential in it.
FNE: What is the most important thing a potential partner/coproducer should know about you?
Tekla Machavariani: I always want my partners to know that for me it's crucial to be involved in the creative side of filmmaking; this is what makes my profession so interesting and enjoyable, to create something together.