Patricia Ortega Talks About Her Second Feature, Being Impossible – SXSW Filmmaker In Focus

The 2019 SXSW Film Festival is almost upon us and we can’t wait to have you here! Before you make your way down to Austin, TX, get to know films from our lineup a little bit better with our Filmmaker In Focus series. Dive into our Q&A with director Patricia Ortega, as she tells us about her film Being Impossible, which will have its North American Premiere in the Global screening section.

In your own words, what does this film mean to you?

Patricia Ortega: This movie came in the middle of a storm: my mother got cancer, I was divorcing and my life changed completely. Being Impossible was the bridge that helped me navigate all these situations as a lifesaver. I discovered that the characters can also speak to us from the story. Ariel, my protagonist, became my counselor. While she took strength in history to assume her identity, she also helped me face my transformation. Being Impossible is a film of changes from an aesthetic, narrative and personal point of view. This film is nothing like what I had done before, it marks the beginning of a more personal and intimate formal search. In the same way that Ariel begins a new life at the end of the story, I also began to be someone else. Sometimes the cinema becomes a projection of our lives.

What motivated you to tell this story?

PA: I grew up in a Catholic and conventional family. I was always the black sheep, the crazy one, the one who never studied a "decent" career, or the woman who did not want to be a princess. Despite all this, I ended up in a conventional marriage in which I lost myself. When I started to break it, thousands of sensations and changes in my identity and way of seeing life awakened. In the midst of these conflicts, the question that inspired this film was born: Why is being a woman or a man defining our lives? I am a little woman and a little man, I understood that I am incapable of adapting to the traditional feminine role. From there, history was born and grew to become the movie that it is today.

What do you want the audience to take away?

PA: I want people to ask lots of questions. I want to awaken contradictions and open other angles. I would like my film to be like a current capable of removing stones. It is not about your liking or not, it is about awakening possibilities, contrasts.

What were you doing when you found out you were coming to SXSW?

PA: This is a good question! When I received the beautiful news that we had been selected to SXSW, in Venezuela, Juan Guaidó ends up proclaiming himself president of transition in my country. I was worried and in the expectation of what was happening and I still have it. At the same time, I was working hard on my next film and surviving this daily odyssey that is being Venezuelan.

What made you choose SXSW to showcase your film to the world?

PA: It is an excellent space of exchange without borders. And my film talks about that, about the need to blur the traditional limits that regulate our humanity. I have always been a follower of SXSW as a special festival where industry and art merge into a whole. The right place to launch our movie to the world.

Add Being Impossible to your SXSW Schedule. Stay tuned in the coming weeks as we share more interviews with our SXSW 2019 filmmakers!

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Being Impossible - Photo courtesy of film

By Neha Aziz