Costa Gavras presented his film on Tuesday, September 24, at the Colcoa festival in Los Angeles. / Photo S.C.

Colcoa (City of Lights, City of Angels), the festival of French films, is a rendezvous that Costa Gavras would miss for nothing in the world. "I do not come here for sightseeing, but I come as soon as I have a movie to present"the Franco-Greek director smiles. More than that, it is a fervent militant of the Franco-American exchanges in the seventh art: "With the French associations (like Colcoa, SACEM and Guild – of which he is a committed member), we try to establish a bridge so that there is a permanent discussion between the directors. I hope it will be even stronger ", he argues on the red carpet of the Directors Guild of America in Los Angeles, Tuesday, September 24.

That night, he came to present his nineteenth feature film "Adults in the room", adapted from the book Adult Conversations: Behind the Scenes of Europe Yánis Varoufákis, the ephemeral Greek finance minister of Alexis Tsipras. In this thriller-like film, the 86-year-old director recounts the Greek crisis of 2015, revealing all the dramatic tension of the Brussels negotiations in an attempt to put an end to the austerity policies imposed on Athens. "The crisis is a tragedy for the Greek people, a tragedy", insists Costa Gavras. "I felt the urge to do something; and the book of Yánis Varoufákis gave me a dramatic line for the screenplay. "

Without wishing to argue or fall into the cliché of anti-capitalism, he defends the return to a "Democratic society". "We are experiencing a profound change in our society. The big problem is that it is run by big capital, banks ", he denounces.

His film, very political with films like "Missing" on the disappearances following the coup d'etat of Pinochet in Chile, is known in the United States. The public discovered his work via "Z", on the dictatorship of the Greek colonels, who won the Oscar for best foreign film and best editing in 1969. "There is an intellectual public in the United States who is interested in what is happening in Europe", is convinced the director, assuring "very curious" to see how the Americans will welcome his newest child. And so much the better, because Costa Gavras now wants to focus on European subjects, even if he is not against a beautiful American story, even "Even a love story".

A very popular American story had not seduced him, almost 50 years ago: that of the "Godfather", which he had refused to adapt in film. "I'm always reminded of this story"he amuses himself."But the book did not please me. It has nothing to do with Francis Coppola's masterpiece.

And anyway, Costa Gavras is not a man to stay frozen in the past. At 86, he appreciates the evolution of cinema, be it special effects increasingly sensational or the turn taken by French cinema, with films like "Les Misérables" by Ladj Ly, screened at the opening to Colcoa, whom he found "unbelievable". In this progressive line, it does not reject bulk streaming platforms, but advocates for improvements. "Netflix is ​​a problem and a great thing because it gives you access to a catalog of movies all over the world. On the other hand, as a director, we do not know how the film lives, how many people watch it, where … And there is also the problem of copyright. It has to evolve. " For the moment, he hopes that "Adults in the room" will have a long and beautiful life in the dark rooms. And especially American, since the director has seduced overseas distributors in the past.


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