Who is Anamaria Vartolomei, revelation of “The Event”?

“L’Événement”, Audrey Diwan’s second feature film and Golden Lion at the 78th Venice Film Festival, stages the story of an illegal abortion in the 1960s. A story sublimated by the young actress Anamaria Vartolomei , whom we had the chance to meet on the occasion of the film’s release.

The event, an exceptional film and actress

Has a film already carried its title better? Audrey Diwan’s second feature film, after but you are crazy, adapted from the autobiographical account of Annie Ernaux, is called The event, and it’s – no pun intended – a big cinematic event. From the finesse of the writing to its masterful staging, the director delivers a very strong work on abortion in the 60s, on the female body too, on loneliness and the political desire for independence.

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To embody her story, it is the young actress Anamaria Vartolomei who lends her features to Anne, the film’s main character. Born April 9, 1991 in Bacău, Romania, The event is the tenth film by the Franco-Romanian actress, ten years later My Little Princess by Eva Ionesco. After appearing at Frédéric Beigbeder, Martin Provost or Marc Dugain, she imposed herself brutally but with infinite grace as a very great actress in Audrey Diwan’s film, a body and a personality for which we invent cinema.

A youth of cinema

If nothing was premeditated, his fate has something completely mapped out. Indeed, her encounter with the cinema as a spectator was not innocent. Anamaria’s first memory of “serious” cinema is indeed a Stanley Kubrick film, which she watched to prepare for her very first role.

I was very young, I had just turned ten, and it was to prepare “My Little Princess” by Eva Ionesco. She asked me to watch Stanley Kubrick’s “Lolita”, and I think it was the film that struck me the most then. I was watching “Shrek”, cartoons, maybe comedies but not such serious movies.

My Little Princess © Sophie Dulac Distribution

From spectator to actress, she continues on her role in My Little Princess, a first experience of filming of which she retains the benevolence and the delicacy implemented.

Considering the harshness and violence of the subject, it was a very happy shoot and it made me want to continue. Finally, I told myself that I wanted to start over. And it was a few years later, around the age of 14-15, that I really told myself that I wanted to do this job, that it would be that and nothing else. I have fond memories of this film. And I think my age protected me, in the sense that if it had been offered to me around 17-18 years old, I might have had another look, I would surely have made hyper-sexualization more aware. , the violence of the subject, this unhealthy mother-daughter relationship, whereas as a child I saw it as a game, I continued to attend school and I played Nintendo between takes, so it was very balanced.

A filmography that is accelerating

After this first experience, we find it in Jacky in the kingdom of girls by Riad Sattouf, three years later. Then in 2016, the pace picked up, with three films in the same year: My Revolution, The Ideal and Eternity. Although Anamaria does not want to retain a single experience because she considers all the others highly, she still has a special affection for The Ideal. Not for her role, relatively limited in her exploration of play, but because she made a decisive meeting there, the director of photography Gilles Porte.

A strong enough bond was created, and we then found ourselves on The exchange of princesses by Marc Dugain. He has since become, in a way, my mentor. He has such a fair and rare look, I really like to trust his advice, his opinions. Gilles sometimes sends me little messages that boost me and give me confidence. Every time I see him, I like to exchange ideas and talk about cinema with him. He means a lot to me, as a young woman and young actress.

His meeting with Audrey Diwan for The event

We logically come to the other great meeting of his young career, the most important perhaps, the one that offers him the formidable role of Anne in The event. A major performance, which is rooted in a first meeting with Audrey Diwan during the casting. A meeting where she says she immediately perceived the requirement of the director, working three key scenes of the film. First the one where she discovers the changes in her body in a mirror, then a dating scene and finally the one where a doctor announces to her that she is pregnant. A little later, they see each other again, when comes out but you are crazy.

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I was very surprised, and reassured by seeing her first film, because she films her actors so well. It is unadorned, simple, very precise and very concise. I really enjoy his work, and I couldn’t wait to start L’Événement. Then there was the confinement, and this imposed time was unifying, we called each other almost daily to exchange references of films, books, very different but essential references. The Son of Saul for the staging, Elephant for the immersive side, and above all Rosetta. Rosetta We have remained, for his side “little soldier”, the determination of the warrior who loses his allies, falls, but always gets up.

The event
The event ©Wild Bunch Distribution

Extensive preparation and a part of surprise

Anamaria Vartolomei recounts this long process, the face-to-face rehearsals after confinement, the anchoring in the 60s, the phrasing of the time, finding the musicality of the film and its relationship with the other actresses of the film. Extensive preparation which, according to her, meant that once filming arrived, more than half of the work was done. But this preparation had overlooked certain sequences, so that an element of surprise remains, able to give birth to the spontaneity and authenticity of his role.

This is also what is beautiful in cinema, arriving on the set and being surprised, being available at the right time and seeing what happens.

Among these sequences that should not be mechanized by preparing them too much in advance, there are the scenes of pain, as well as the fabrication of a particular scene that Anamaria Vartolomei tells us below in video:

The event Audrey Diwan is currently in the cinema.

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