Fire of Love | The interesting fate of Katia and Maurice Krafft

Until recently, American director Sara Dosa knew nothing about the couple of French volcanologists Katia and Maurice Krafft. It was while looking for pictures of Icelandic volcanoes erupting for another film that he found the couple’s work.

Posted at 7:00 p.m.

Mary Tison

Mary Tison
The Press




« Leurs images étaient absolument spectaculaires et fascinantes », raconte-t-elle en entrevue téléphonique de Paris, à quelques heures de la première européenne de Fire of Love. « Mais c’est quand nous en avons appris davantage à leur sujet en tant que personnes – un couple marié, amoureux l’un de l’autre et amoureux des volcans, des gens philosophes, espiègles et charmants – que nous avons désiré faire un film à leur sujet. Un film qui permettrait d’entrer dans leur univers, de voir le monde à travers leurs yeux et la lentille de leurs caméras. »

Katia et Maurice Krafft sont disparus dans une nuée incandescente au mont Unzen, au Japon, en juin 1991. C’est donc dans les livres et les archives du couple que l’équipe de Fire of Love a dû plonger pour apprendre à le connaître.


PHOTO ERIK TANNER, GETTY IMAGES

Sara Dosa, réalisatrice de Fire of Love

« C’était dans les premiers mois de la pandémie, se rappelle Sara Dosa. Notre productrice, Ina Fichman, qui est établie à Montréal, a pu entrer en contact avec les archives Images’Est, à Nancy [en France], which digitizes the images well to send them to us via the internet. »

The team thus captured 180 to 200 hours of images in 16 mm format taken by the couple. In addition, thanks to the work of a Quebec content and archive researcher, Nancy Marcotte, the team was able to get their hands on 45 to 50 hours of interviews given by Katia and Maurice Krafft on television.

“They are popular, comments Sara Dosa. They are seen in newscasts, variety shows, travel and adventure magazines on television.»

The team also consulted nearly twenty books published by the couple. “It gives us a better idea, not only of their adventures, but of their philosophy, of their lifestyle. »

Visual stability

The director interviewed several relatives, but chose not to include these interviews in the documentary. He preferred to pay attention to the material left by the couple.

We want the film to be captivated by the images of Katia and Maurice, through their words.

Sara Dosa, director

In addition, the inclusion of these interviews in the documentary may indicate a respite from its temporal. “It is important for us to put the plot in place at the present time to have the impression that Katia and Maurice are with them on their journey.»

Even though the pictures the couple took go back 30 or 40 years, they remain impressive. “They are very talented,” Sara Dosa explained. So, when Katia was little, she was attracted to painting, to the arts. He keeps a very artistic look to his images. »

The director hailed the post-production work, “being able to bring out the colors and texture of Katia and Maurice’s images”. The Montreal company Post-Moderne signed this work. Other Quebecers joined the adventure, such as Gavin Fernandes and Patrice LeBlanc on sound.

This presence in Quebec is desired.

We want an essential francophone component. I understand French, but I can’t speak it very well. We wanted the post-production team to have French as their first language. So we got on board with amazing craftsmen.

Sara Dosa, director

In the original English version, the director chose not to dub Katia and Maurice Krafft, who mostly speak French, and chose subtitles.

The French version also used subtitles rather than dubbing for the narration, which was done by filmmaker Miranda July.

Sara Dosa also chose not to think about the deaths of the couple volcanologists.

“Through our research and our conversations, we understand that they are living the life they aspire to live, a life full of meaning and love. They know they can die at any hour doing this kind of work. Not because they wanted to die, but they were at peace with the idea. It is not a question of celebrating their death, but of celebrating their life. »

In theaters July 22

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