Janna Ji Wonders is the 2016 winner of the Made in Germany – Fordserpreis Perspektive. The prestigious award is given by Perpspektive Deutsches Kino and Watchmaker Glashutte Original. Along with a mentoring program, a cash prize of 15.000 euros is given for story development of a feature linked film.
I managed to get a fast exclusive interview with Janna at the Glushutte Lounge in Potsdamer Platz during the Berlinale.
How long have you been a filmmaker?
10 years. I attended the Film School in Munich. I received a Master’s in Fiction Filmmaking Directing.
What type of cinema do you like?
Tragic Comedy. Art house and Independent Cinema. Films like Still Alice and Beast of the Southern Wild.
Is it easy for a woman to direct in Germany?
I feel now there is a change in the air. Producers are looking for women’s stories. TV and film companies are more open. There is an organization named Pro Quote Regie. It is demanding access and rights for female helmers.
Is there a director you admire?
Susanne Bier. She has strong stories that are character driven. Jaques Audiard, He has a visual signature, a style of film making with mysterious elements.
What is on your agenda?
A documentary film is first. A story about 3 generations of women in my family, Walchensee Forever is the title. The title is from a lake in the Bavarian Alps were I am from.
My mother and father were hippies, summer of free love types. My mother lived an interesting life. She lived in a German commune. It was very intellectual.
And the film?
I am working on a fiction film but this is in the early stages.