Interview with Carlos Agulló
"There are much more important things in life than winning medals"
Carlos Agulló is the epitome of film and spirit, of mixing the two into a cocktail shaker and pouring out memorable stories. A good example of this is his latest documentary (Más que plata), which is based on the week spent in India by the Spanish rhythmic gymnastics Olympic runners-up.
Carlos Agulló has spent half his life in the world of film, as both an editor and a director. Complot para la paz (2013), a documentary applauded by festivals across the world, was the turning point of his career. When he is not behind the camera or shut away in an editing room, sports have an overwhelming importance for him. Sport as a physical activity and also as a social project. So much so that, as he himself says, "it saved my life". It was his passion for films and sport that led to Más que plata, El sueño de volar and A ritmo de Río.
Más que plata, his latest collaboration with the Spanish Gymnastics Federation (RFEG), is the story of the trip to Pune, India, by the members of the rhythmic gymnastics team that won the silver medal at the 2016 Rio Olympic Games. It was an experience in which the Spanish women acted as mentors for a group of Indian gymnasts and that taught them, as Carlos noted, that "there are much more important things in life than winning medals."
It was an intense week in which Carlos had no idea what was going to happen. "We had thrown some good ingredients into the pot and we knew that things could happen but we didn't know what, specifically. That was my main concern." But the magic did happen and he was there to capture the moment on film.
If you know how to observe, keep quiet and point the camera at life, things happen
The Spanish gymnasts came away having learned something new, but they were not the only ones. Carlos learned and portrayed the fact that sport is a universal language, that a smile is worth a thousand words and that enthusiasm and effort change lives. "Indian gymnasts may dream of an Olympic medal, but they know they are not going to get one. But they still enjoy themselves along the way." That is the philosophy that permeates Más que plata, 27 minutes of heat and colour by Carlos Agulló.