Interview: ‘Loving Vincent’ Director Dorota Kobiela

Loving Vincent is unlike any movie you have seen. It’s a artistic masterpiece of a movie, entirely oil painted. Every one of the 65,000 frames. A collaboration that included 125 painters. The more you look into the film and the efforts it took to put this together, the more you are likely to marvel at it. I had the fortune to speak to the co-writer and director of the film, Dorota Kobiela. We discuss the very efforts and time it took to complete the film and why she decided to depict Vincent van Gogh among other topics. We also talk in Polish! The full audio is available below:

What was the process like of getting all these painters together to make this movie happen:

DK: The film brings to life 77 paintings of Vincent van Gogh, 49 landscapes and 19 portraits. The whole process started with my short story idea nine years ago. Then it transformed into a feature film. At first we were developing the script and we worked on it considering his life, his letters and paintings. They were our main source of inspiration. We wanted to tell his story with his paintings and bring it to life.

On the the pitch to distributors:

DK: This was very new and it was difficult to compare. They would ask me to compare it to what kind of movie was done like this and what was the box office, but we couldn’t say since this was a first movie like this. The first funding came from the Polish public funds from south of Poland, original funds from Wroclaw. That allowed us to do the first six minutes of the film which helped get more people on board and believing in it.

MY TAKE:

This was a very special interview for me. As a proud Polish-American, I’m thrilled to see a fellow Pole bring about such great work to the mainstream. Poland has been gaining recognition over the last few years (even nabbing an Oscar for Ida) for the talented artists, performers and filmmakers. It’s great to see Dorota being such an influential figure to bring this film to life.

She had a lot to say, and I couldn’t be happier that I got to listen to her speak about the process of making Loving Vincent come to life. It amazes me to hear about all the talented people it took to make this film happen and the dedication they had over a long period of time. This is a one-of-a-kind movie that you won’t see anywhere else. The visuals are intoxicating, but the story shouldn’t be overlooked either, as it really delves into van Gogh’s life.

My favorite part of the interview had to be talking to Dorota in Polish. I’ve done many interviews, but never did I get a chance to speak Polish to someone in it. For anyone that will be checking out the interview from Poland, I wanted to give them a special treat. I’m very proud to be able to give a little extra to the Polish audience and to hear someone like Dorota speak and hopefully make the Polish people proud. I hope to have another opportunity to do this one day, in Polish.

Loving Vincent is out now in select theaters (check local listings)