France

Synopsis

Laure is 10 years old. Laure is a tomboy. On her arrival in a new neighborhood, she lets Lisa and her crowd believe that she is a boy. Truth or dare ? Dare. Summer becomes a big playground and Laure pretends to be Michael, a boy like the others... different enough to get the attention of Lisa who falls in love with him. Laure takes advantage of her new identity as if the end of the summer would never reveal her unsettling secret.

Director's Statement

Tomboy was made incredibly fast. I started writing the script at the end of March 2010 and we were shooting in August. It was shot in 20 days with an initial budget of 500 000 euros and a crew of 15 people. Those figures reflect the movie's state of mind. This is both the radicalism and the dynamic we longed for. We wanted to believe it was possible to work in a different energy than the long journey of writing and financing for years. The project was designed this way. It was a philosophy. Since my first film Waterlilies (2007), I had been working as a screenwriter mostly, writing TV series and co-writing with directors for their films. I already had the idea for Tomboy but I had only written a quick outline. At the time I didn't think it would be my second feature film. It was just a story I had in mind. In March 2010 I went to see Benedicte Couvreur the producer of Waterlilies. I told her I had an idea for a film that would be quick to produce and that I wanted to shoot during summer, only 3 months later. She was enthusiastic, even though the timing was crazy. We both were excited by the story and also by the challenge. I wrote the script in three weeks. I designed it so that the film would be easy and simple to prepare in such a short time frame. Two main sets, 50 sequences. I built it around a very simple and strong argument, the story of a lie, an undercover character, so that it would produce a powerful narrative with suspense and empathy. The character has a strong goal in a double play dynamic. This efficient story allowed me to take the time to relate a vivid chronicle about childhood, with documentary aspects, and unpredictable accidents. I was also very committed to the subject surrounding identity and the question of gender. Childhood is often referred to as the age of innocence. But I think it's a time of life full of sensuality and ambiguous emotions. I wanted to portray that.
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Cast & Crew

Directed by: Céline Sciamma

Written by: Céline Sciamma

Produced by: Bénédicte Couvreur

Cinematography: Crystel Fournier

Editing: Julien Lacheray

Production Design: Thomas Grezaud

Original Score: Jean-Baptiste de Laubier

Cast: Malonn Lévana, Jeanne Disson, Sophie Cattani, Mathieu Demy, Zoe Heran

Nominations and Awards

  • Feature Film Selection 2011