Éva Gárdos is an award-winning film director and editor born in Hungary which she left at the age of six. Francis Ford Coppola gave Gardos her first job in film, working as a production assistant on Coppola’s epic Apocalypse Now in the Philippines. “That was my film school.” She went on to establish a career as a film editor (Valley Girl, Mask, Bastard Out of Carolina) working with distinguished directors such as Barbet Schroeder, Peter Bogdanovich, and Anjelica Huston. “All of the films I worked on had a dark side,” she recalls. “I’m always attracted to books, movies, art and music that are dangerous, oddly beautiful and funny in weird ways.”
Éva’s screenwriting and feature film directorial debut, An American Rhapsody, starred a young Scarlett Johansson. The film is based on the true life events of Éva’s family escaping from Hungary in the 1950’s and being forced to leave their infant child (Éva) behind. Éva spent six years in Hungary with foster parents before rejoining her biological parents in America. This was a traumatic experience for her. “I’m never sure which country I really belong to,” she says. “Perhaps both. That is a feeling that only immigrants can understand.”
After discovering the bestselling Hungarian novel, Budapest Noir, she returned to Hungary to develop and direct the film version. "The minute I finished the novel, which I read in English, I was determined to make this film. After making Rhapsody, a very personal story, I was excited by the idea of making a genre film with dark, political undertones." Set in 1936, when Hungary was on the verge of embracing fascism, the film resonates with the politics of today. The film stars stars Krisztian Kolovratnik and Reka Tenki who this year is one of the Berlinales “Rising Stars.” It was financed by the Hungarian Film Fund and will be released in the US by Menemsha Films in early 2019.
Gardos has several projects in the works, including Cindy in Iraq based on a true story about a female truck driver working as a contractor in Iraq working for KBR/Halleburton at the height of the war.
Artist's Chosen Interview:
Her Two Childhoods
Tools that I use for brainstorming and developing ideas:
- Museum exhibits
- Flicker - great source for images
- Google - great place for starting research
- The New Yorker
- People’s stories - everyone has one!
- Movies of all kinds
- Music! "I'm really liking a lot of rap these days, plus Trent Raznor and Franz Liszt."