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Jacques Baratier's light cube


Richard Dembo
Raoul Coutard Film-maker
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Yes, so in fact it was a film which again illustrates all the good that I think of his techniques. Because it was Richard's first film. So Richard did something quite amusing that I have to talk about because it's hilarious. Richard Dembo, as everyone knows, is Jewish. A very practising Jew, and he had obviously decided not to film on a Saturday. So he had asked the entire team who were all Catholics if they didn't mind filming on a Sunday. And in the end everyone agreed. And so one thing was for sure, overtime was out of the question, because he needed to be home before the star. And we had Saturday off, so that was quite amusing. That was quite funny. And in addition there were problems with the food because he obviously always wanted everything to be kosher. So when we went to the canteen, he always had his own menu. On the other hand, Dembo is someone who talks a lot. He talks a lot but you have to be selective with what he says, because... So he's... for example, when I ask him, 'The hospital room at the end, where the guy is dying, do you know what kind lighting you would like?' 'I would like an icy lighting that you would find in a North European clinic'.

Oui alors c'était un film d'ailleurs, ça illustre encore... Tout le bien que je pense de ses techniques... Parce que Richard c'était son premier film. Alors Richard il y avait un truc qui était très marrant, alors il faut que je parle de ça parce que c'était à mourir de rire. Richard Dembo comme son nom, comme tout le monde le sait, il est juif, très pratiquant, et il avait décidé de ne pas tourner forcément le samedi. Alors il avait demandé à toute l'équipe qui étaient eux des cathos si ça ne les emmerdait pas de tourner le dimanche. Et finalement tout le monde a dit d'accord. Je veux dire alors donc là, il y avait un truc qui était sûr c'est que d'abord il n'était pas question de faire des heures supplémentaires, parce qu'il fallait qu'il soit chez lui avant l'étoile là. Et puis le samedi on était peinards, donc c'était assez marrant ça. Ça ce truc-là c'est assez drôle. Alors en plus il avait des problèmes de nourriture parce que naturellement il voulait toujours que ce soit casher à chaque fois. Alors quand il y avait la cantoche, il y avait un petit menu à lui. Par contre, il avait... Dembo c'est un mec qui parle beaucoup. Il parle beaucoup mais il faut faire le tri dans ce qu'il raconte, parce que... Alors lui c'est... Par exemple je lui demande, 'Tiens, ce truc, la chambre à l'hôpital à la fin là, où l'autre est en train de mourir, tu as une idée de ce qui te plairait là pour la lumière?' 'Je voudrais une lumière glacée comme une clinique du Nord de l'Europe'.

French cinematographer, Raoul Coutard (1924-2016) was twice nominated for the César Award for best cinematography which he won in 1978 for 'Le Crabe-tambour'. He made over 75 films and documentaries, including 'À Bout de Souffle', Le Mépris' and 'Band à Part'. He was the most acclaimed French cinematographer of his generation and one of the key figures of the New Wave.

Listeners: Bernard Cohn

Benard Cohn is a French filmmaker and writer, who has directed five films as well as numerous documentaries and television series. As an assistant director, he worked with many important filmmakers, including Luis Buñuel, François Jacob, Otto Preminger and Woody Allen. He was a founding member of the Ciné-Qua-Non cinema club and has acted as editor and translator for various publications on the world of cinema.

Bernard Cohn est un réalisateur et écrivain français, ayant réalisé cinq film ainsi que de nombreux reportages et séries télévisées. En tant qu'assistant réalisateur, il a travaillé avec plusieurs grands cinéastes, notamment Luis Buñuel, François Truffaut, Otto Preminger et Woody Allen. Il fut membre fondateur du ciné-club Ciné-Qua-Non et a participé à la rédaction et traduction en anglais, de plusieurs ouvrages sur le cinéma.

Tags: Richard Dembo

Duration: 1 minute, 46 seconds

Date story recorded: October 2004

Date story went live: 24 January 2008