Les Pères Lachaises II

Les Pères Lachaises Part Two: Filming and Video Resolution

My first experience in Pere Lachaise was three weeks ago when I went alone. As I walked through the cemetery, I was continuously thinking about how the cemetery felt as if it was its own city within a city. A town of tombs, each a home to a different person, a different story,  a different life.

When joined together with Farah, Ilona, and Lara, we wanted to explore this idea of the cemetery’s inhabitants. We began brainstorming how we could delve into the daily perspective of ghosts in the cemetery — especially a cemetery with graves of famed people that attract tourists all year long.

We were inspired by the American sitcom “The Office”, a mockumentary which explores the personal and professional lives of employees in an office in Pennsylvania. The reason “The Office” is such a popular series is because of its realisticness to daily life as an American nine-to-fiver and how the series presents the characters in their ordinary, routine environment.

We decided to create our own spin-off of “The Office” called “The Cemetery”. We wanted to satirize the celebrity aspect of Pere Lachaise by creating ironic characters; they are common people and perhaps even a little bit out of place in the cemetery. We created five different characters: Amy, Nicole, Wes, Sascha, and Godefroy. You can read the detail character descriptions here.

We set the first episode during the daytime, to present how the characters are during their common day-to-day encounters with one another — instead of setting the show at night time as many ghost stories take place then.

The resolution of the video turned out differently than I thought it would, and I think that if we were to continue it to an actual television show there would be a great room for improvement. However, the intention behind the project was to create a different perspective on death, the afterlife, and the stories that Pere Lachaise tells. I think that we successfully were able to tell the stories (in a brief ten-minute video) and give the viewer a new, unique, perspective on the characters associated traditionally with Pere Lachaise.

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