With an eye to the future when the need to stay 2 metres away from each other is a thing of the past, The End of Social Distancing from Victor Claramunt (who brought us ecological art film La Mer last year), plots our route back to closeness with stylish flair. A playful repurposing of footage from the Valencia-based director’s pre-covid projects, Claramunt tells us how he brought humour and hopefulness to his quarantine film.

This reframing of the traditional reel as a social distancing film is perfect for the times we find ourselves in. What was your process for selecting clips and constructing the edit through that lens?

The main idea came from seeing how television commercials were using stock images to tell their ideas. I decided why not tell something positive with my own images? So one thing many of my clients said to me came to mind: “Are the characters not too far apart?” And I thought I’m going to demonstrate that they are not as far away as they think. This made me think that over time we’re all going to get closer and closer until finally, the social distancing will end. I come from the world of graphic design so I thought what better than a graphical element which marks the distance, 2 meters. I could then reduce that distance to explain my concept without any need for a voice over.

I have only been in the world of audiovisual advertising for a few years. I haven’t made more than 80 pieces between fashion films and TV ads for different brands (Armani, Nespresso, Longchamp, El Corte Inglés, Herbal Essences, Air France…) so it’s easy to remember each frame I have shot. All my works use a mix of style, dance, humor and I wanted to reflect that in the piece.

I decided why not tell something positive with my own images?

In the film there are frames with the real social distance but in others, they are closer although the line indicates otherwise. I think humor is very important and even more so in the times that we live now.

Are you working on any more quarantine projects at the moment? How are you keeping yourself sane and creative during this period?

I am working on what could be my future movie. They are just ideas but surely over time, it will become a feature film.

I am quarantining with my family. We are all safe. My son has special needs and demands a lot of attention. It’s not the best environment to create but the family is the most important thing right now. Sometimes, at night, I write some lines when everyone rests and at other times I don’t touch the computer for days. I believe that creativity must be worked on but my brain never stops, at any time. There will be time later to put the ideas on the table.

The End of Social Distancing is one of the many great projects shared with the Directors Notes Programmers through our submissions process. If you’d like to join them submit your film.

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