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SWING RENDEZ-VOUS

A feature film in the world of swing

About the project

Swing Rendez-vous: Genesis

Invited to New York last year, I discovered the world of swing, I had the chance to meet talented musicians such as: Tatiana Eva-Marie (Avalon Jazz Band), Gordon Webster, Adrien Chevalier, Vinny Raniolo... I met passionate lindy-hoppers, 'roaring-twenties' ball organizers. I was immersed in that incredible community animated by a 'vintage' lifestyle, I discovered people who live at night and disguise their melancholy as joy.

I immediately wanted to tell what I had seen!

My film Swing Rendez-vous is the story of those musicians with battered lives, those dancers and music lovers in search of authenticity. It is also, and above all, the story of my meeting with them.

Navigating between Paris and New York, between French and English, Swing Rendez-vous will take you on a romantic and crazy adventure among those 21st-century 'zooters'.

Pitch

Théodore, a clumsy and humdrum Parisian, discovers the existence of a supernatural song. An old jazz standard from the 1920s that can make two people fall in love instantly, if they listen to it at the same time.

His blood boils. He must find this song at all costs, because he wants to use it to charm Amandine, whom he believes to be the woman of his life!

Very soon, his investigation leads him to New York in a swing jazz community. He discovers the musicians' wild and disjointed lifestyle. From sets to jam sessions in clubs, Théodore begins to live at night. Focused on his search for the magical score, he meets a whimsical singer named Maria, who might be the last person who owned it...

Photogramme du film 1

The Spirit of the Film

Imagine a zany and sophisticated comedy, a story between Paris and New York, full of music, magic and fantasy. That's what Swing Rendez-vous aims to become, thanks to your support.

I've always considered this film as a spontaneous gesture, as if it was urgent to shoot. The people I want to film are here, they exist, they live, they laugh, they shudder, they cry! I want to go see them now. I don't want to spend two or three years setting up a big machine to recreate everything artificially... I prefer to start with a light and flexible crew, because the technical means allow it today.

So I wrote the script of Swing Rendez-vous in a few months. I tested the different versions by having them read by my New Yorker friends, who fortunately recognized themselves in my story.

The music of the film (there will be a lot of music, obviously) will be original. A series of jazz standards are being composed. On set, American and French musicians will play them, during actual jam sessions. Those jams, which will be part of the fiction plot, are to be recorded live, on a documentary mode. That's why we need a 'mushroom' team, which will graft itself on existing locations and events, just like an organism living in symbiosis with its host. That's why we need a flexible and adaptable filming plan, which is realistic within a tight budget.

The Global Interest In Swing

I want to show the counter-culture and community of swing. With Swing Rendez-vous, I'd like to touch what's behind the phenomenon: a touch of nostalgia, some idealistic spirit that is probably vain but very beautiful. For one evening, those musicians, music lovers, and dancers take refuge in past values, but they never knew that past so they constantly reinvent it. They don't seek to impose their way of life or remain stuck in a lost era. They're more interested in perpetuating a tradition and having fun. I want to film that state of mind.

In addition, the 'swing' phenomenon is gaining momentum not only in New York but all around the world. We can see lindy-hop schools, swing balls and swing events everywhere in France (Le Monde just published an article about that), Europe, the Middle East, Asia ... Moreover, did you know that the 'hipster' word, which seems so fashionable today, comes from those young white people who used to listen to black jazz in the 1940s?

Articles de presse

Some documentaries have tried to analyze the phenomenon. I'm referring to Suzan Glatzer's Alive and Kicking, for example. But Swing Rendez-vous, if I'm not mistaken, would be the first contemporary fiction film to dive into that universe.

How is the project going?

To date, and partly thanks to our successful crowdfunding campaign, we have finished shooting and editing the film! Now there are the crucial stages of post-production: mixing and color-grading. We are still targeting a theatrical release by the end of 2019.

What are the funds for?

Why Crowdfunding?

We have an independent distributor committed to our side, who will release the film in French cinema theaters. We have raised some funds and found logistical support on both sides of the Atlantic.

However, my project doesn't really follow the 'canons' of a first French film: I want to talk about a counter-culture phenonmenon, I want to shoot in Paris and New York with a mixed cast and two languages; I want to highlight my musician friends because I find them extraordinary, and I don't necessarily want famous actors to re-interpret their parts... In short, I believe in the strength of my project because it's sincere and in harmony with its subject. Also, and most importantly, I want to go fast, I want to film what I see today! I don't want to spend years and years preparing for the shooting with a gigantic crew: That would be non-productive, whereas I already have a lot of things with me now.

Anyway, let's keep in mind that through the history of cinema, a lot of filmmakers have started their career with a micro-budget first feature film. For example: Agnès Varda, Damien Chazelle, Christopher Nolan, John Cassavetes, Nanni Moretti, David Lynch, Joel & Ethan Coen...

For all those reasons, this crowdfunding is essential for the project. By contributing to it, you'll stay informed about the preparation, shooting, post-production... And please challenge me, suggest me ideas on the way. I love this dialog and I'm sure it'll be very constructive.

☞ Let's make this movie together!

How will the money be spent?

I spoke about a small film crew, but not a non-existent film crew... So the technicians, actors, musicians who surround me will be paid. I'll also have to take care of their trips (between Paris and New York, for some of them) and expenses. We'll need to rent some equipment, besides what we already have, because that's essential to produce beautiful pictures and beautiful sounds.

In addition to those strictly film-related expenses, we'll have to finance the making of the goodies, of course, and the crowdfunding platform's commission + VAT.

So the least dollar will be very important for the project, and we will be eternally grateful for it.

The Goodies

There is something for everybody!

You might want to order a signed copy of the script. It's possible! The big advantage in that case is that you can send me feedback and comments. I'll read everything, and maybe it will enable me to improve a few things before actually shooting...

You might also be tempted by our mugs, tote-bags...

... and also: this very nice tie/square pocket kit (man version), or this scarf (woman version) with bow-tie patterns! Those elegant, original and unique silk items are handmade. They'll make you stand out from the crowd at your next swing parties...

Goodies

What if I want more?

Do you want more? Do you want to buy anAssociate Producer credit in the end credits of the film, and make your investment tax-deductible? That is possible: we set the minimum subscription at $1,000. And that could be a good operation for you, because as the film is made in a 'handmade' economy, it can quickly become profitable. Write me directly and I will explain everything: [email protected]

On the contrary, you can't financially participate but you still want to help the film? It's possible, of course! You can, for example, spread this page www.swingrendezvous-film.com to your friends: on Facebook, Instagram, Twitter... Or in a personalized e-mail, or by text-messages... The more the world will hear about our project, the happier we will be, and the better the movie!

How brave you are, you've reached the end of this page!

Thank you so much!

Gérome Barry

About the project owner

The Team

Gérome Barry (réalisateur)

Gérome Barry (director). Born on the 14th of Frimaire 193 (French Republican Calendar), I study cinema at La Fémis film school. I produce about ten short films, which win awards in international festivals. Then I direct three short films: The Big Musical Number (musical comedy, audience award at Beijing film festival), Séraphin (comedy, multiple broadcasts on Arte French TV) and Suicide Express (comedy, screenings in about thirty Gaumont cinema theaters, jury award at Montpellier film festival).

Meanwhile, I work for nine years in film production, first as a script reader for Cinémage, then as a script consultant for Quad Cinema, and then as a post-production supervisor for Moby Dick Films, where I have the chance to meet directors such as Emmanuel Mouret, Jean Paul Civeyrac and Serge Avédikian. Swing Rendez-vous is my first feature film, which I direct and produce myself, in a handmade way.

To see my short films & videoclips: www.geromebarry.fr

 

Many talented young musicians will be part of the cast, playing more or less their own parts. Among others:

Tatiana Eva-Marie

Tatiana Eva-Marie (character: Maria). Raised in a family of musicians, Tatiana begins her career as a singer at the age of four, recording an album with Henri Dès. After studying at the Théâtre Populaire Romand, the American Academy of Dramatic Arts in New York and Paris Sorbonne University, she learns gypsy jazz. Acting in prestigious venues such as the Comédie Française or the Théâtre du Rond Point, she also writes musical shows that are very successful at Avignon Theater Festival. Based in New York for eight years, she is the co-founder and singer of the swing music Avalon Jazz Band.

Vinny Raniolo

Vinny Raniolo (character: Vinny). As a talented accompanying guitarist, Vinny tours all over the world and performs at the Sydney Opera House as well as at the San Francisco Palace of Fine Arts, New York's Lincoln Center or Vicenza's Teatro Olimpico. He also pursues a solo career and has just released a new album, Air Guitar, playing standards with the common theme of aviation, his second passion. Vinny has appeared many times on the small and big screens, playing in the series Boardwalk Empire and the movie Café Society.

Adrien Chevalier

Adrien Chevalier (character: Angelo). Raised in a family of violinists, Adrien studies at the Conservatory of Avignon and, once in Paris, at Didier Lockwood's jazz school. Passionate about gypsy and eastern music, he creates the successful Pad Brapad Moujika band, with whom he tours all over Europe. Then he goes to New York and founds, with Tatiana Eva-Marie, the Avalon Jazz Band. Meanwhile, he composes screen music (for French TV channels such as Canal+, France 3...), and even sings in Ridley Scott's movie A Great Year.

 

On the French side, the cast will gather:

Arielle Dombasle

As a polymorphous artist with many facets, Arielle Dombasle easily goes from comedy to directing (Opium, Alien Crystal Palace), staging and singing, her true passion. She will appear in Swing Rendez-vous as a music teacher who will lead Théodore towards his magical song...

Bernard Pivot

No need to introduce Bernard Pivot to the French audience. Famous TV presenter of the cultural shows Apostrophes, Bouillon de culture and Dicos d'or, he is currently president of the Goncourt Academy. Passionate about literature, Bernard Pivot is also a jazz lover. He has accepted to play a part in Swing Rendez-vous as a 'cameo', and will lead Théodore to his search of the mysterious musical score...

Esteban

Esteban (character: Rémi). Multi-talented artist, Esteban loves to change roles and jump from one genre to another. You could see him in the French movies: La Fille du 14 juillet (Antonin Peretjatko), Nos futurs (Rémi Bezançon), L'Effet aquatique (Solveig Anspach), Ôtez-moi d'un doute (Carine Tardieu) and even Gaston Lagaffe (Pierre-François Martin-Laval). Under the nickname 'David Boring', he is the beandleader of Naive New Beaters, and presenter on Ouï FM radio and Canal+ TV channel. Esteban is also a filmmaker: in 2015, he directs Yo ! Pékin, a fake documentary, and in 2017, he directs the short movie: Le Club. He is currently finishing his own webseries.

Edwige Morgen

Edwige Morgen (character: Théodore's mother). Edwige sings in London's jazz-clubs during the 1990s, while improving her voice and piano technique at Goldsmith College of Music. She records her first album in England: "You and the Night and the Music". Then she moves to Madrid, where she studies music composing at Escuela de Musica Creativa, and works with many Argentine, Colombian and Brazilian musicians. Back to Paris, she releases the successful album: "Quelque chose dans l'air", with her own compositions.

Noémie Zeitoun

Noémie Zeitoun (character: Noémie). After studying at Cours Florent in Paris, Noémie plays several parts in short movies, videoclips, TV programs and feature films. On stage, she plays in Fou d'elle by Patricia Seknazi at Théâtre du Gymnase. This year, she has played under the direction of Olivier Abbou in Screened, in the feature film META by American director Joseph Cahill, and Cupidon by Julian Maniraho. She will also play the main part in Mathieu Brelière's first feature film Ivresse(s) along with Louka Meliava (release: 2019).

 

Behind the camera, I'll have the chance to work with:

Giovanni Mirabassi

Giovanni Mirabassi (composer). Internationally renowned pianist and composer, Giovanni has always had a foot in jazz and the other in popular song, having collaborated with Charles Aznavour, Serge Lama, and also Cyril Mokaiesh or Agnès Bihl. In 2004, his solo album Avanti! wins a French Victoire de la Musique. It is composed of world revolutionary songs. In 2011, he renews that concept with ¡ Adelante !, recorded in Cuba. In 2016, he discovers jazz singer Sarah Lancman whom he decides to produce (Inspiring Love, 2016, and À contretemps, 2017). Passionate about cinema, he records in 2015, in Japan, a full album with themes from Hayao Miyazaki's films. The same year, he composes the soundtrack of Emmanuel Mouret's film Caprice. In 2016, he becomes a character for the screen, in Romain Daudet-Jahan's documentary Off The Records. I had the chance to work with Giovanni on the music of all my short films: so I'm happy to continue that long and fruitful collaboration on Swing Rendez-vous.

Edward Bally

Edward Bally (director of photography). After studying at Toulouse Political Science Institute and the City University of London, Edward works as a journalist for the BBC and AP. Then he travels around the world to produce reports for UNICEF and the United Nations. As a documentary filmmaker, he directs many topics for the biggest French TV channels in New York and throughout the United States. He collaborates on the film Unfair Game, which is nominated at FIGRA Festival and wins best documentary award at Videoshare Festival. Passionate about photography, Edward is now launching into fiction. He will bring his sharp eye and energy in the making of Swing Rendez-vous.

Florent Castellani

Florent Castellani (sound operator). Trained at Louis Lumière Film School, Florent can move with disconcerting ease from film sets to sound editing rooms. He works, among others, on the films La Fille du 14 juillet, Willy 1er, and Fever - on which he becomes chief sound operator. I had the chance to work with Florent on two of my short films, whose sound he recorded and edited perfectly, facing the craziest sequences I could offer him. I particularly appreciate his phlegm, pragmatism and melomania.

 

With the support of

Sacem

In partnership with

Jazz Box Radio International