Ma Vie En Rose
· AKAMy Life in Pink.........1997 - French - 88 min. - Feature, .
· Children's/Family, Comedy/Drama, Family-Oriented Drama
A reader and script analyst for the Brussels’s production house of D’Erwin Provoost, Multimedia, Belgian native Alain Berliner made his feature film directional debut with
“Ma Vie En Rose”, the story of Ludovic Fabres, a little girl in a boys body who puts her trust in God that this gender error will be corrected.
‘Ludovic’ is waiting for a Miracle. With seven year-old-certainty, she believes she was meant to be a little girl for real – and that the mistake will soon be corrected. But where she expects the miraculous, Ludo finds only rejection, isolation and guilt – as the intense reactions of family, friends and neighbours strip away every innocent lace and bauble.
Berliner: “To my knowledge, no one has covered this topic at this age before, when the question of the gender-identity appears. The movies often treat sexual / gender identity as comedy material. With Ma Vie En Rose, I wanted the child’s innocence and her amazing certainty, to make her questions touch our hearts and allow us to understand them and her. There is a lot to laugh about in the film, but there is also a dose of drama.”
The script, written by Chris vander Stappen, sets out to examine how having a child who is different can affect the parents, the neighbours and the entire community in which they live. Believing that it’s easier for a girl to be a ‘Tomboy’ than it is for a boy to be girlish, vander Stappen chose to tell the story from a “boy’s” point of view. Vander Stappen: “The stakes are much higher for those born as males. A boy who thinks he’s a girl stirs up deep fear in men of not measuring up to an image of virility.”
Agreeing to produce the project was Carol Scotta, whose company Haut et Court started out in short films and distributions. Her interest in discovering new talent led her to Berliner, vander Stappen and Ma Vie En Rose.
Signed to play the seven year old Ludovic was Georges du Fresne, a child who could concentrate and act on a tight production schedule, yet be distant enough from his character to avoid identifying with her.
Berliner: “Most of the children auditioning couldn’t act this part, as the fiction was too close to their reality and it completely froze them up. George is amazingly mature for his age and brings a true actors thinking to the part, trying to understand why his character does whatever she does.”
To create Ma Vie En Rose’s beautiful visual effects, Eve Romboz, who worked on Peter Greenway’s films and Mission Impossible, used advanced image composition and animation to visualise Ludo’s magic dream world.
Ma Vie En Rose opened in France on May 28, 1997, followed by it’s American debut on Dec 26.
A “charming and compassionate comedy-drama” (Leonard Maltin), the picture won the Golden Globe Award as Best Foreign Language Film of the year.
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