A brother and sister return to Argentina, country of their birth, for the first time in their adult lives. Against the backdrop of glamorous tango clubs of Buenos Aires, they uncover dark family secrets and the reason for their parents' emigration to Canada.
Alison Murray is a writer/director based between Canada and Buenos Aires. Born in Nova Scotia, raised in England, Murray began directing music videos in the UK. She made her first documentary with TRAIN ON THE BRAIN (Channel 4/TVO) in which she rode the rails across North America with a group of teenage hobos. She followed up with her first dramatic feature MOUTH TO MOUTH (Best Feature, Brooklyn International Film Festival ). The film followed disenfranchised youth searching for belonging. She made CARNY for the Sundance Channel (Hot Docs, Best Documentary, Brooklyn International Film Festival). Alison moved to Buenos Aires to study tango, she met her partner Carlos, made another documentary Caprichosos de San Telmo (TIFF), had two children and became an international tango champion. Murray tells stories about identity, championing the disenfranchised, and love.
How did you start making films and what was the first film project you worked on?
I originally studied performing arts and in that context we had a module in 'video production'. I realised that the screen space offered all the possibilities of live performance plus more. The first film I made was called Kissy Suzuki Suck, it was a dance film that also explored women's relationship to pornography and prostitution.
What genre of filmmaking are you looking to work on and why?
I continue to work in fiction and documentary, but I am interested in moving into the series space - I love the idea of an extended, interwoven narrative and massive character arcs.
What is the most challenging aspect of being an independent female director?
No longer being considered an equity seeking group. Apparently women reached parity alongside men in film already, but nobody told me.
How challenging is it to fund indie films?
As challenging as a person with no arms punching themselves in the face.
Please name three of your most favorite female directors. How have they been influential in your work?
Claire Denis, Julie Dash, Lisa Cholodenko
What is your next film project and what are you currently working on?
A female-centric thriller set on the Canadian prairies, written by the incredible Joadie Jurgova
What was the inspiration behind your latest feature film project, Ariel?
My love of Buenos Aires the city where I met my partner and where my two daughters were born, my love of tango, and my despair that people in North America know nothing about Operation Condor.
How did you find the cast and the crew Ariel?
Please let us know about the process from pre-production to post production. I worked with great casting directors.
What is the distribution plan of the film and did the film receive any screenings or was it featured in festivals?
We have hooked up with a great , female-led sales company House of Film.
Why do you make films and what kind of impact would your work have on the world?
I make films to spread some joy and humanity, to build understanding, and to exorcise my own demons.