The film project «How to Become Nothing», by musician Paulo Furtado, will be presented in a film-concert format this Saturday, March 11, at 21 pm, at Teatro das Figuras, in Faro.
In tomorrow's show, the film's soundtrack will be played live by The Legendary Tigerman and the images will be manipulated in real time by director Pedro Maia.
The project «How To Become Nothing» brings together The Legendary Tigerman (alter-ego of Paulo Furtado), the photographer Rita Lino and the director Pedro Maia in a road trip through the California desert. When he launched the project, the Portuguese musician had in mind to release an album.
«I decided to start the album with a movie, in a very inverted way, and invite Pedro and Rita to write this project, which would have to do with Tigerman, but for those who didn't know Tigerman, it could have to do with any other thing. It is a completely autonomous film that is not limited to my musical universe», says Paulo Furtado to Musical/Sul Informação.
This is an adventure, admittedly for three, that was built along the process itself. It's a fake Super8 diary and photography, with texts by Paulo Furtado and the result of three visions of a man's journey through the desert who, more than disappearing, seeks to reach nothing, seeks to be nothing. The end result is a feature film but, at the beginning, the idea was different.
«We had two assumptions: shooting a medium length and two video clips for songs that didn't exist yet…(laughs)». However, in the middle of the trip, there was a decisive moment, which led the project mentor to a decision made "technical at the time", but which changed the whole process and which is, in fact, the result of passion and choice. by Paulo Furtado countering the digital and filming in Super 8.
“I decided: let's give up video clips and focus on the film, this is getting very solid and we need all the film to shoot the film. This is the decision that allows it to become a feature film», he said.
Filming in the desert was later complemented with others in Berlin, marking the entry into the project of Rodrigo Areias and Bando à Parte, as co-producers, which gave another dimension to the project and made it possible to finish the film and close the feature film .
“It turned out to be a long process, almost a year, but very interesting for the three of them. It was a great learning moment. We went to the desert in May last year and only closed the film a short time ago», says the musician.
The choice to head to the Californian desert had, on the one hand, a very practical reason, since it was the place where, later, Paulo Furtado recorded his new album, at Rancho de La Luna, downtown Joshua Tree. At the same time, it fit the author's stylistic choice, in this case, exploring some concepts and imaginaries.
«The desert is a great artistic influence, which I've been studying for the last 3 years, I made productions, for example, for Keep Razors Sharp, which, if we look back, it was no coincidence, there were already assumptions that I came to use», he illustrated the musician.
The desert is also a big influence on Legendary Tigerman's upcoming record "which comes out in September and has nothing to do with this soundtrack, it's something completely different." The musician confides that his entire new album is composed during the shooting, very influenced by this character he gave body to and whose meaning the audience will perceive when they see all the objects together. “Because this starts with a film and a journey, it will continue with a disc and the film will then make its career,” he said.
Soundtracks have been an important part of Paulo Furtado's artistic life, who has already composed for cinema (Soot, The Secret Agent, Space Organization, Estrada de Palha), theater (We are the Rolling Stones, The Player) and even dance (O Baile) and, this year alone, there are three more works ordered for national films and another for an international one.
This type of work is something that, he confesses, gives him immense pleasure. «Looking for a sound that has to do with me but that serves, in a convenient way, a greater good. It is important for me to be out of focus, not to be the center of attention and to be an aside in a bigger machine», said Paulo Furtado.
In the case of «How To Become Nothing», the musician says that the electronic music influences of Pedro Maia and Rita Lino led him to want to get closer to what is not his universe, because he felt it was something important to them. But, he claims that it is not always easy for him to find what calls the tone of the film.
“I can spend weeks looking for what the film will sound like, what instruments will I use, how it will be a particular sound. That's what takes a long time, it's the most intellectualized process, then making the music is more intuitive», he explained.
The return to reality of Tigerman's original albums reflects the time spent making soundtracks. The time spent looking for other sounds, or exploring the instruments, broadens the instrumentalist's knowledge and opens up other paths that lead to new compositions.
“Tigerman's new record has a lot more keyboards, synthesizers and electronics, because I've been using them more and more in soundtracks. I don't like to repeat myself from project to project, I don't like to make a soundtrack and then people hear a chord and think, oh it's him! I like that they are different, but that there is a transpiration of learning and things that happen from one thing to another», he revealed.
The musician confesses that, from the contact he has had with the audience at the end of the shows, the reaction has been positive, with curiosity for parts of the film and an identification with some of the references.
But Paulo Furtado leaves a small warning. “The film is radical at times and has separated the waters, there are those who like it a lot and those who don't like it at all. But it's an honest film and an attempt to tell a story that would have to be told like that, and because of the junction of my universe, Rita's and Pedro's, it had to be, in some way, radical», he warned.
The multifaceted artist assumes that the attitude is to face this, like other projects, as an art manifesto. As such, there is a production process for its authors, but it is important that the public does not leave indifferent.
“As long as people, in the end, are thinking and wondering what they saw, and we can even talk about it, I think we've done our job. This is more important than spending an hour and a half quiet and that is part of the presupposition of this project», he concluded.
Tickets for the show «How To Become Nothing» cost 12,5 euros for the 1st audience and 10 euros for the 2nd audience.
Listen to the full interview with Paulo Furtado: