Josep Maria Forn i Costa

Article

October 20, 2021

Josep Maria Forn i Costa (Barcelona, ​​April 4, 1928 - October 3, 2021) was a Catalan film director. At first he tried to dedicate himself to literature, but since 1950 he has moved to cinema, where he makes about 250 works. He owned the production company Films de l'Orient. He began with the short film Gaudí (1954) and made some commercial films. He obtained a certain echo with La piel quemada (1966), where he addresses the problem of immigration to Catalonia despite the strong censorship of the time. In 1975 he founded and chaired the Institut del Cinema Català, from where he promoted the production of short films and news. From 1987 to 1991 he was director general of cinematography at the Department of Culture of the Generalitat de Catalunya. In 1985 he worked with the Valencian actor Ovidi Montllor i Mengual in the film Un, dos, tres ... ensaimadas and nothing else, directed by Joan Solivellas. In 1994 he was elected president of the College of Film Directors of Catalonia, and in 2001 he received the Creu de Sant Jordi. In 2010 he won the Gaudí Prize of Honor in recognition of his career. He died on October 3, 2021, at the age of 93.

Biography

Josep Maria Forn began working in the world of cinema in 1948, as a meritorious producer at Emisora ​​Films. After working as an assistant director, he accepted the commission to direct his first feature film: Yo maté (1955). Forn knew how to take advantage of the fertile moment that cinema was experiencing in Catalonia and shot a series of films in which he showed that he was able to move the most diverse materials and genres with solvency. The Green Frog (1957), Death at Dawn (1960), Fulano de Tal's Private Life (1960), Death Penalty? (1961), which provoked his first conflict with censorship, La ruta de los narcóticos (1962) and José María (1963) certify his good job. After La barca sin pescador (1964), based on the work homonymous of Alexander Large house, realized the burned skin (1966), its more personal film. It is a sincere example of testimonial cinema, focused on the figure of an Andalusian bricklayer who works on the Costa Brava and awaits the arrival of the family. A brave portrait of immigration in the sixties and, as a background, a precise commentary on the tourist boom. Next, Forn decided to adapt Manuel de Pedrolo's novel M'enterro en las fundamentales, first with the title of ‘La contestación’ and then with that of ‘La reponn’. The plot of the play, the student movement contemplated through the confrontation between a young college student and his father and structured as a thriller, however, openly clashed with censorship, which forced him to remake the script and, later, to pass through the scissors numerous scenes. Shot in 1969, the film was released after the dictator's death in 1976, and was replaced in 1985, now dubbed into Catalan and with the original title of the novel. This bad experience kept Forn away from the direction of feature films for ten years, but not of short films, since between 1976 and 1977 he made three. During this time he devoted himself to the production of several films by filmmakers such as Gonzalo Herralde, Antoni Ribas, Ventura Pons and Eugeni Anglada i Arboix through his company P.C. Teide, which it acquired in 1958 from the hand of José Ángel Ezcurra after the commercial failure of Expreso de Andalucía (1956). He also chaired, in two stages, the Institut del Cinema Català, of which he was a founding member. His return was another culmination of Catalan cinema: Companys, proces a Catalunya (1979), a heartfelt evocation of the last year and a half of life of the President of the Generalitat shot in the castle of Montjuïc and one of the emblematic titles of the reborn cinema historical.The next period of inactivity behind the camera was even longer: eleven years. In this interval he assumed the position of

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