WIENER ZEITUNG: Up until now, why have there been no films about Lou Andreas-Salome?
CORDULA KABLITZ-POST: This could be because it’s only recently that there’s been a trend toward making movies about women. There were predominantly movies with male leading roles, because the cinemas were run by males and stories were made from a male viewing angle, where women appeared in supporting roles.
WIENER ZEITUNG: How did you come to Lou Andreas-Salomé?
CORDULA KABLITZ-POST: She has inspired me since I was 17. By chance, I discovered her biography at the city library, and it impressed me greatly. She was something of a pioneer of emancipation, and was referred to as femme fatale because she didn’t behave as was expected of a woman in that time.
WIENER ZEITUNG: Does the film keep to the true history of events?
CORDULA KABLITZ-POST: Because I come from documentary film making, it was my first priority to stay true to the character. We did a lot of research. Sometimes I had to condense. When you tell a biographical story, you need a filter, through which you look at the person’s life. For me, she embodied the concept of free thinking more than any other woman of her time. That also makes her very modern. Her individuality fits well in our time. Today you can live as a free-thinking woman. But even if Lou were alive today, I think it would still be difficult for her. She was always special.
WIENER ZEITUNG: The film covers a large period of time, from her 16th to her 72nd year of life. Is it about information on an almost forgotten personality?
CORDULA KABLITZ-POST: Sure, otherwise you will not do it justice. The artifice in the film, to begin with the writing of a biography - which did happen - functions very well. We had to then fill that biography with life. The facts were true, but did she really smoke opium with Nietzsche? It seems obvious that, since Nietzsche smoked lots of opium, why wouldn’t she have tried it? She was curious after all. I found it interesting to tell the story of how a free spirit develops and grows. How does one do that, to remain so for life, without caving in, without making compromises? That’s what I find so great with her: the lifelong authenticity, staying true to herself.
Nadine France Ellman