Gulnara Ivanova

She is the filmmaker of One Touch Dollar Baby film.

SKSM: Tell us about yourself, who is Gulnara Ivanova and what do you do or have you done?

Gulnara Ivanova: I have just graduated from the Institute of Cinematography and am taking my first steps in the film industry. That’s probably all, I think there will still be a lot of mistakes on my way and hopefully achievements too.

SKSM: When did you know you wanted to become a filmmaker?

Gulnara Ivanova: In my childhood, I think. When I was a little girl, I spent a lot of time by reading books. And with my friends we played in shooting films. We watched any film in evening and played to make film next day.

SKSM: When was “One Touch” made? Can you tell me a little about the production? How much did it cost? How long did it take to film it?

Gulnara Ivanova: The film about a curse was originally cursed. The strict quarantine prevented us. Half the team got sick. We had to change actors midway through the project. There was no money. Then the sky opened and I was sent to study in another country. There was no way we could finish it. To be honest, I thought this would never happen.

SKSM: Can you explain why you specifically chose this story (The Man Who Would Not Shake Hands) to film?

Gulnara Ivanova: I read all stories in program. But decided to use this story because it is closer to our country’s culture. I am from Uzbekistan and story about curses and evil eyes is close to us

SKSM: How did you know about the Dollar Baby program? Was it a wild guess?

Gulnara Ivanova: I took a course in directing, these were my first steps in the film industry. And my master recommended Stephen King’s program to all of us. We then took part, and I received a confirmation reply.

SKSM: Can you explain why the title “One Touch” was chosen and not for “The Man Who Would Not Shake Hands”?

Gulnara Ivanova: I adapted the plot to modern times, and slightly changed the circumstances of the curse. The name was born somehow on its own. Because most of all the hero is afraid and wants this touch

SKSM: Can you tell us something about the filming process? What is easy or difficult? What did you have in mind?

Gulnara Ivanova: As I said, there were a lot of problems. What I wanted at that moment did not work out. However, we got out of situations. It was a huge school for the whole team. After it, we decided without fear to shoot a full-length film ourselves without money.

SKSM: Was there a funny and/or special moment during production that you would like to share with us?

Gulnara Ivanova: for example, we made a clapperboard out of boards. We painted it and left it to dry in the yard. It was a beautiful, homemade movie clapperboard. But the next day, we didn’t find it. Someone stole it. It turned out that a local homeless man froze that night and took her for firewood.

Another story about theft. We made a wall for one shot. And it was very big, so it stood in the entrance while we were filming inside the apartment. And this wall was stolen by a neighbor. For some reason he decided that we didn’t need it. I don’t know why this is so, maybe because in our film there was a story of thieves.

Or another moment, we were filming a key frame where the heroine goes to her own death. If she goes into this house, she will not come out alive. We shot the top shot, and the heroine was sitting on the table, and then she got up to go into the house. And we saw huge letters on the table, it said the “FIN”

SKSM: Production is over. Are there thoughts that make you think now, we could have done this differently?

Gulnara Ivanova: A lot of things. And I’ll probably do it. Because, it seems to me, as a director, I made the most important mistake, there is a lot of talk there. And cinema is about the picture, not chatter. It seemed to me that all these words must be said at that moment. And now I understand how it should have been.

SKSM: Were any movie fragments cut out that you now miss?

Gulnara Ivanova: No, that’s just the point, I saved everything and it turned out a lot. Now I want to remove many points.

SKSM: How does it make you feel knowing that many Stephen King fans will never see your film adaptation? Do you think this will change in the near future due to an internet/streaming release maybe?

Gulnara Ivanova: Oh, it would be cool, I think, if after the festivals there was some kind of website where all the works were published, naturally with the permission of Stephen King

SKSM: Can you describe the feeling when the film was finished and how the film was received after viewing?

Gulnara Ivanova: Relief, as I say, I faced a lot of difficulties. But they toughened me up. After this film, I was not afraid to film a full film on my own with friends without funding.

SKSM: What “good or bad” reviews have you received on your film?

Gulnara Ivanova: Our trailer has won many places, we took the best thriller in Malaysia. In general, everyone’s comments were friendly. But I understand for myself that I was afraid to do a lot of things, but I can do better. The most important critic is me

SKSM: What was your main goal you wanted to achieve with this film?

Gulnara Ivanova: I was just curious if I could handle it or not.

SKSM: Are you a Stephen King fan? If so, which are your favorite works and adaptations?

Gulnara Ivanova: I love the Green Mile. It’s about adaptation. I even went to study, doing a director’s analysis of the Green Mile.

And I like to read Stephen King’s short stories. I don’t classify them as horror. Everything is much thinner there. The author conveys very interesting thoughts to the reader. Makes you think.

SKSM: If you could make another Stephen King story into a (Dollar Baby-)movie, what would it be and why?

Gulnara Ivanova: I was choosing between the two at that moment.  «The Man Who Would Not Shake Hands» and «The Man who loved flowers». Yes, I would have chosen the latter, it just seemed to me at the moment that it was more difficult to show about flowers.

SKSM: What do you think about the existence of a Dollar Baby community? Were you aware of this before?

Gulnara Ivanova: No, this is the first time I’ve heard about it.

SKSM: What are you working on nowadays?

Gulnara Ivanova: I’m finishing my first full-length film

SKSM: What is one thing people would be surprised to know about you?

Gulnara Ivanova: Few people believed me at the beginning that I had signed a contract. Only when the media confirmed it. Then they paid attention.

SKSM: Where do you see yourself in 5 years?

Gulnara Ivanova: In the director’s chair.

SKSM: Thanks for taking the time to answer my questions. Is there anything you want to say to the fans that read this interview?

Gulnara Ivanova: Thank you for your attention to my person
Actually, it’s not that difficult. The main thing is to try and experiment. Don’t be afraid, something will work out

SKSM: Do you like to add anything else?

Gulnara Ivanova: The appearance of the Stephen King program turned out to be just a door to a dream for me.  In fact, I had no idea that Mr. King would turn my life around like this.

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