Francesco Giannini’s storytelling talent became apparent in childhood when he would re-enact scenes from Lord of the Rings with brother Chris in their basement. He began his film career playing minor roles in X-Men and 300. Acting financed his bachelor’s degree in Sociology, Film Studies, and Communications certificate.
Knowledge of the human condition and passion for film makes him a great storyteller. To acting and directing, he’s added producing, cinematography and editing. In various film productions, Francesco has acquired well-rounded knowledge of the production process and an eye for detail.
In directing both commissioned and private ventures, Giannini has established optimal balance between creative and human aspects of filmmaking. Producing high-quality films in cost-effective ways has earned him a shining reputation in filmmaking circles in Montreal and Toronto. His first short film – The Race of Life – screened at Cannes in 2012. The Prince, a subsequent short based on an Italian fable, screened at Milan’s International Film Festival and was runner-up in the ACTRA SHORTS category. In 2013 he launched – Franky Films Productions.
Giannini continues to build relationships with other filmmakers to open doors to new opportunities. In addition to producing in collaboration with other companies, he is currently developing several personal projects through Franky Films for both television and big screen.
With still-strong Laval roots, this prolific artist recently co-wrote and directed The Flare, which premiered at the Fantasia Film Festival, and was featured on Montreal Breakfast Television.
To draw out of Francesco some intimate details of his life’s work in his own words, TLN asked one-on-one questions which produced the following insights:
In 140 characters, how would you describe what you do?
I’m a storyteller who tells tales through visual compositions made up of moving images. My goal is to touch people with these images and stories, and hope they can experience a variety of emotions and feelings to which they can relate.
You describe your life’s work as a mission. What is the source of your inspiration?
The inspiration came from a very young age. My brother Chris and I were always playing with cameras, re-enacting scenes from films we loved or created original content. I was a dreamer from a young age and still am today. My professors and teachers, especially from Laval Catholic High, always told me I was a daydreamer. I found myself lost in thoughts and imagination most of the time.
What is the most memorable shock in your work so far?
There are a few memorable moments. One that stands out the most was my first acting experiences alongside Susan Sarandon, Penelope Cruz, Alan Arkin and Robin Williams in “Noel”, a sentimental tearjerker Christmas story directed by Chazz Palminteri. I went on set as an extra and came off an actor. I was nervous and stressed at first since I wasn’t prepared for it, but once the camera started rolling, I felt at home in my element and knew then that I wanted to be a part of this business for life. Another milestone was my first short film,”The Race of Life”- being accepted at Cannes in 2012.
Where do you see yourself in 5-10-15 years?
Directing a few feature films in the next five years, more than a few actually, and producing in the next 10 years. In 15-20 years, I see myself producing films for young struggling filmmakers trying to make it in the business as I am today.
What is the biggest challenge that you’ve had to overcome?
Making movies is constantly challenging, so it’s difficult to pinpoint one specific event. One moment I can remember had me working on a music video with a bad flu, in the middle of February, and couldn’t get out of it. Torture!
What does the word “notable” mean to you?
Recognition through hard work, respect for others and dedicated commitment to excellence in the painting of pictures of human connection to agony and ecstasy through the cinematic arts.
A more than appropriate summation of Laval film-maker Fancesco Giannini. Thank you Francesco and May The Force of Film-making be always with you.