This Short Film Came Out Of Spending Time With A Crew Of Illegal Kart Racers

Everyone needs an outlet, a way to let off some steam, escape from their mundane responsibilities for a while. It just so happens that the group of men filmmaker, Luis Lienhard, came across while in Zurich, chosen past time was illegal.

The group of street racers used the city’s tarmac to race their homemade karts, an illegal adrenaline fueled hobby that, and Luis was captivated by it. He wanted to find out who they were: where did they come from, what motivated them, what did they do when they weren’t hurtling along the darkened streets.

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A filmmaker by trade, Luis’ obvious instinct was to create a film, but gaining to access to the gang wasn’t as easy as walking into a group of football players. “I spent a lot of time with the guys, we really had the same vibe and they accepted me as a Crew Member”, he explained when we spoke to him, “Time passed and I suggested to one of the guys, that it would be awesome to make a short movie. So he asked the whole crew and they were okay with it.”

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The result is fast-paced and slightly tense short film The Wild Werner (https://vimeo.com/166250671), yet it is also human and heartwarming. It is a warm insight into a group of people we may otherwise cast as trouble makers. We spoke to Luis about the inspiration, the challenges and the equipment needed for his short film.

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The Plus: What inspired you to create this film?
Luis Lienhard:
Somebody told me about this Scene in Zurich. At first I was like, ‘what?!’, I had never seen anything like it before and I couldn’t believe it existed. So I contacted a Crew Member (I got the number from a friend) and I didn’t hear anything for about two months and then suddenly, out of nowhere, he sent me an invitation for a Race.
I went to this Race and it was fascinating – I decided I wanted to make a film about it.

TP: What was the most challenging aspect of the videoing process?
LL:
I promised them to not show their faces – that was the most challenging bit – filming without showing any faces. The few Scenes where it was impossible, I just blurred the faces. Another challenging part was the fact, that a lot of the things they did were illegal. In many scenes I didn’t have a lot of time to arrange or set-up because we had to get away fast if something happened.

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TP: How would you sum up your time with the group?
LL:
Great. Lovely people! Calm, funny, respectful. But they’re looking for their kick and that’s how they get it.

TP: How do you feel about the finished film?
LL:
I am really happy with the result. If I could have shown their faces, I could have told the story differently.

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TP: What equipment did you use and how long did it take to edit the film?
LL:
We used a Sony A7S II and a A6300, and some Go Pros for the Race. I was really happy having another great Cameraman with me.

TP: Tell us about yourself – what’s your background?
LL:
I’m a Filmmaker based in Zurich, Switzerland and filming has been my passion since I was 13-years-old. It was my first documentary. Normally I do more like, Image films and stuff.

TP: What’s next for you?
LL:
I don’t know, we will see what happens. :)

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