Interview with Jean-Julien Pous
– Hello Jean Julien Pous, you are a french videographer, who explores animation combined with live-action, you live actually in Seoul, and you directed several commercials, music videos, corporates films for French, American and Chinese clients, you directed a documentary too?
Yes that’s right.
– Can you briefly described your education, your career, and what are you doing actually in Seoul?
I studied in Supinfocom, a 3d animation school in France. I made several short films that got screened and awarded in festivals. That brought me commercial works for several years. Now I’m teaching 3d animation at a university in Seoul.
– You have realized a documentary named « Ordinary people » Why did you choose this specific subject and have met all these poeple? Your portraits are for example, an retired doctor, a banker, an waitress but also a young man who’s been beat up by his parents .
I’m touched by the ordinary people there. I lived in China for years, and I think they are the soul of this country. I’ve been overwhelmed and moved by their warmth, their open mindness, their simplicity, and their philosophy. Most French people don’t know anything about China or Chinese. They are full of clichés about what Chinese are supposed to be: fake, hypocrits, dirty, uneducated, only good to copy others and make cheap quality products. I was curious about how people met in the street think, what are their job, their motivation, their dream. I was thinking: maybe you will go to work everyday and meet the garbage cleaner, the bus driver, the guard, you will pass in front of them a thousand times without knowing who they are. So it was just born out of curiosity.
-How many times you need to realize a documentary like that? Including pre-production, the filmings and post production?
It took a long time, because it wasn’t done at once. It was shot in a too short time without enough preparation. That means a lot more time in editing usually. And my Chinese isn’t very fluent, so I had to subtitle about 6 hours of rushes before editing. It took over a year to do that, while working on a daytime job.
-Have you some advices for people who want to create documentaries and work as videographer?
Plan ahead of shooting, don’t be discouraged by the time needed. For street documentaries, having had multiple cameras would have helped me a lot. And an interpret. Listening and watching other documentaries, and analysing them shot by shot is also precious.
-The market of commercials vidéo and audiovisual is doing well in Asia despite the economic crisis? What is your feedback about the market and opportunities in China, in Korea or generally in Asia?
There is no economic crisis for visual media in Asia. There are more and more projects with higher and higher budgets, as I know of. Governments understand the soft power of films, so they invest more in it as well.
-Your knowledge about the «French culture» is an advantage in Korea and China?
That’s a very good question. That’s been years that I don’t speak in French anymore, barely 1% of my time. I mostly use English and Korean. I’m still not so used to not using my mother tongue anymore. To balance this out, I’m listening France Culture everyday on my way to work. It not only helps keeping in touch with the country and the news, but also get to see the world through another perspective. French culture is definitively useful on several aspects: high ideals of what freedom and human rights mean, critical thinking, curiosity, opened mind and passion for food. You know what? The fact that we are so passionate about food is a deep common point we have with Chinese and Koreans. About art, I think there are many very talented people in France. That helps to get a sense of aesthetics. French people are still very respected in Asia, and mostly attached to positive values.
-What are your future projets in Asia?
Mostly continuing to work on animation or film projects.
Website and portfolio: http://www.jjpous.com/
Interview realized by Nicolas Bailleul