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Estefanía Cortés tackles the subject of death in “Eden”, her debut film

The director from Madrid, who makes her feature debut with this film, highlights the “psychological and analytical work” carried out so that the actors “were clear about what they were doing”

Ramón Barea, Estefanía Cortés, actor y directora de EDEN.

The director Estefanía Cortés presented the film Eden, which is competing in the Punto de Encuentro section of the Valladolid International Film Week, on Monday 24 October. Cortes was accompanied by the actors Charlotte Vega, Israel Elejalde, Marta Nieto and Ramón Barea, and the film’s producers. Eden is a title whose main theme is death and allows the spectator to “fill in the missing pieces of the puzzle”, according to the director from Madrid. “I thought it was interesting not to give all the answers”, she added.

Four strangers come to Eden, a clandestine company in the middle of nature, to end their lives. A guilt-ridden young woman who cannot forget her past; an old man who wants to avoid the pain of his loved ones; a charismatic woman with a personality disorder; and a desperate man who hides a dark secret. Eden brings them together in the moment before his death, but is it so easy to escape from life?

The director, who makes her feature debut with this work, has explained that the starting point lies in a news story she read some time ago about a meeting of several people in Japan to take their own lives. “Why did they need to do it together and not alone,” the director asked herself. “This question was important”, she specified, before affirming that, for Cortés, making films is also “asking questions and talking about subjects” that “interest and obsess” her.

Cortés, who also explained that he decided to use the square format to “help the spectator to enter into claustrophobia”, declared that they have worked “a lot” on the psychology of the characters. “We have done a great job of analysis so that they were clear about what they were doing”.

During the meeting, he described as “enriching” the time he spent with the whole team prior to filming. “It helped us to understand the atmosphere I had in my head; my particular code”. In this sense, the actress Charlotte Vega, also shared the director’s words: “It helps a lot to get into character”, she said, before adding that, in addition, “being together in a film with such a delicate subject is very important”.

The director explained that one of the difficulties she has encountered in this project has been to ensure that the work has “coherence from beginning to end”. “I come from shooting short films, which are made in two or three days; getting everything right now was more complicated”.

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