A few weeks ago Ozon team welcomed back to the office one of magazine’s first interns back in 2006; Josefine Camitz. Today Josefine, who was awarded the “Swedish-Greek of the year” for her work in the two countries by the Board of Cultural Exchange between Sweden and Greece, is a director, writer and runs the production company “Ithaki Film”. Her film “Vera’s Will” won the Audience Award at Athens International Short Film Festival Psarokokalo 2012. We couldn’t be happier – or more proud–for her!
What do you remember from your internship at OZON? Did you want to be a film maker then?
I was an intern in the International Relations Department, but I was a bit all over the place. I’d been writing since I was a child and wanted to tell stories.. I was djing back then and tried to make my own music. It didn’t go very well. I got into filmmaking by accident; it was like I’d never done anything else.
Your recent film “Vacant”, which premiered at Göteborg International Film Festival, was shot in Athens and in Greek. How did you choose the scenery and why did you choose Athens to film your movie?
“Vacant” was shot last spring. The story takes place in Athens. We shot in Kypseli, Koukaki, Kolonaki and Filopappou. I wanted to portray Athens as ugly, dirty and beautiful as it is. I worked with Swedish photographer Amanda Angelman; she gave me the opportunity to see Athens with new eyes. We worked with close ups and natural lightning.
The film is about a romance between two people against the backdrop of Greek society. The film you are working on deals with Greece, too. What is the message you are trying to get across through referencing the context of Greece?
In “Vacant” I wanted to explore the tragedy between two people. I wouldn’t say “Vacant” is a romance; it’s a story about not being able to let the one you love in, even if you want to; it is about not showing anyone your true self, not showing your weaknesses. In “Vacant”, Myrto suffers from disease and prefers to embrace her death than to fight against it. Sure it has to do with Greek society today – it is unavoidable not be affected from my surroundings – yet, “Vacant” is a story between two young lovers that could take place anywhere. At the end of the day, we all deal with the same issues. It takes time to analyze your own work. I’m fascinated by themes such as power, sex and separation. The filmmaking allows me to investigate questions I have and to sort it out initmately with people around me, which is great.
You moved to Greece because you liked it? Just like that?
Yes, it’s funny. I was 17 and I fell in love with Greece. I remember this instinct of knowing, I have to move here. Now, I’m based in Athens and in Stockholm.
What do you like most about Athens and Stockholm?
Everything is accessible in Athens. I feel free here. I like the light of the city, the energy; a chaos that never collapses. In Stockholm, I like the fresh air, the sea next to my apartment, the nature. I grew up in the center of Stockholm and I was always outside. No bad weather only bad clothing. But one day I’d like to settle down in Greece, get a house on an island.