Having fallen under the spell of Fellini in the movie theatres of his native Abitibi, André Melançon wandered into the NFB at a time when anything could happen. He nabbed a role in Clément Perron's Taureau (1973), a gig that led to another offer--to direct children's films. With no directing experience, he forged ahead, drawing upon his natural ease with kids and previous experience as a school counsellor. 1978 would be a banner year: Melançon's documentary Les vrais perdans earned widespread praise and Comme les six doigts de la main was hailed as the year's best Quebec feature film. La guerre des tuques (1984) consolidated his stature in the growing genre of children's film. He went on to direct other features, along with TV series and theatrical productions, returning to the theme of childhood with the touching documentary Printemps fragiles (2005).
This interview is part of Making Movie History: A Portrait in 61 Parts.
Making Movie History: André Melançon, Denys Desjardins, provided by the National Film Board of Canada