Meet the New French Cinema Week Filmmakers: Composer Julie Roué

April 25th through 29th is the 4th Annual 2018 New French Cinema Weekend. Join us at the AFS Cinema to enjoy a diverse and provocative line-up of award-winning French language films.

To celebrate the fourth year of the showcase, we interviewed a few of our participating filmmakers and artists. Julie Roué, composer for Léonor Serraille's film MONTPARNESSE BIENVENUE, will be joining us for the festival. Learn about Roué’s inspiration and work on the film below:

Austin Film Society: You are a musician and sound designer. What drew you to filmmaking?

Julie Roué: Going out of my comfort zone! I chose a career where you don't go to work at the same place every day at the same time. I could do my own music–which I do on my free time–but I like exploring the multiple facets of my musical personality. Directors push me in one direction or another. They make me to go to places where I never would go by myself.

Each film I’m on is a universe I enter, with its inner laws, its colors, its rhythm. And each director is a personality to discover, a person I need to understand in order to enter their system. I am fascinated by people and how they manage to tell stories that resonate with other people. I like understanding each storyteller's algorithm and add my own maths to their system.

AFS: You'll be speaking at a Moviemaker Dialogue during your time with us in Austin. What topics of discussion are most important when speaking with musicians who are hoping to break into film or television work?

Roué: Being very new in this industry myself, I would like to make this moment a real dialogue where I can share my experience on very specific situations. So far I have worked mainly on short films. I have no recipe, I reinvent my way of composing for each film. I would like to show a few examples of the challenges I had to face, how I tried to understand what the director had in mind to transform it into music. I also want to talk about how the composer and the sound designer can work hand in hand to create a harmonious soundtrack.

AFS: Tell us about why you decided to take on MONTPARNASSE BIENVENUE, and what attracted you to the project.

Roué: I had already worked on Léonor Serraille's short film, BODY. I admired her talent for portraying strong characters, women, evolving in a world where they don't fit very well. Her writing is sharp, precise, loving and full of asperities. I read the script of MONTPARNASSE BIENVENUE at an early stage and immediately was struck by Paula, the main character. First, I hated her. And then, unintendedly, started to understand her, and love her. I could totally relate to her, not in the sense that she was like me, but in the sense that she triggered strong emotions, questioned my beliefs. Léonor Serraille wanted me to write songs, songs that would be the sound set of the places Paula goes through, but also her inner playlist, a cartography of her mental states. I love writing songs; she didn't have to say more.

Roué will participate in a Moviemaker Dialogue on Wednesday, April 25. She will also participate in the post-screening Q+A of MONTPARNESSE BIENVENUE on Thursday, April 26 at the AFS Cinema. Tickets to the film and series passes for the full New French Cinema Weekend lineup are available for purchase; AFS members receive a discount. Additionally, AFS members are invited to the members-only Opening Reception on April 25.