Ruaidhri Ryan
(Great Britain)
«Dialogue of Cultures represents an opportunity for many people from around the world to converge at one of the planet's most recognizable museums to cross pollinate thoughts and ideas and potentially bring to light pervasive global themes».
Iceland is a country marked by its frozen nature and extreme temperatures, which give it a certain touristic appeal. The harshness of the climatic conditions and the enthusiasm of tourists regularly cause car accidents to happen. From this phenomenon, verging on absurdity, the artist and filmmaker Ruaidhri Ryan had planned to make a road-movie, one that he will never finish.
From the phenomenon of frequent car accidents, verging on absurdity, the artist and filmmaker Ruaidhri Ryan had planned to make a road-movie, one that he will never finish. He thus adventures into the different phases of pre-production, production and post-production of what this film could have been. Fog World is the hilarious diary of this failure, in which Ryan calls on a 4x4, a GPS gnawed by the cold, an elf and a Viking guide with whom he maintains a virtual correspondence. Moving between simulated reality, video games and cinema, the film explores the geography of a country marked by the exoticism of its landscapes, often used as backdrops for Hollywood movies. A hilarious look at the way in which new technologies condition our ways of representing territories.

Recent awards:
Vision Du Reel, Switzerland, April 2019 (screen)
Share this material
— Have you ever been to Russia? What were your expectations before you visited this country?
— I have never been, I saw a documentary recently from Russian civilian dashcams that showed some really spectacular, beautiful and bizarre things… I suppose it will be a little like that intertwined with some misty Tarkovsky tracking shots, so characterful customs and a few surprises.
— You are the main character of your film. How long did it take to get used to the camera? Why did you decide to be a storyteller in your own film and stay on the screen during the whole thing?
— Back in school I was involved in theatre and in my early twenties, I did quite a lot of performance art and would often film those performances, so I don't have much issue in front or behind the camera, cameras are just part of life, we all have them and it seems no-one is really afraid of them these days; selfies, instagram… CCTV! Anyone making a film is telling a story of some kind, my story could have been interpreted as mocking or sarcastic so having me on screen, embarrassing myself or messing up a line here and there was a tactic to avoid that interpretation, it placed me in the frame too as a participant, not outside as an observer, judging… I had to be complicit.
— While driving through endless white deserts of Iceland, have you discovered anything new about the country itself and its locals? Have you discovered anything new about yourself?

My partner at that time was Icelandic and I had visited her family many times and feel an affinity with Iceland thanks to those lovely experiences. I'm not sure if Iceland made me discover anything new about myself, but the making of Fog World has certainly liberated me from a particular approach to filmmaking, a particular ideology surrounding the definition of imagery and production values, I care much less about how things look now and I'm far more keen on the kind of energy an audience can take away from a film.

— What was the most difficult part during the production period? What problems did you encounter during the filming? How did you solve them?
— The film was not as riddled with problems as Lost in La Mancha but it certainly shares some closeness to that! I think the dominant problem was surrounded by my own grandiose, somewhat contaminated thoughts about the filmmaking approach and experience.
What do you think of today's digitalization tendency?

— The movement towards digital is great, it democratizes knowledge and offers the ability to connect us in a gamut of entertaining ways, I think its making the world funnier, more light hearted and transparent.
— What stereotypes about Russia do you know?

— Vodka, Cold, Hats, Putin!
Stay tuned:
WhatsApp: + 44 770 916-6805