[INTERVIEW] Michel Leclerc and Jean-Pierre Bacri

We met on the occasion of a presentation of THE LIFE VERY PRIVATE FROM MR SIM, the director Michel Leclerc and the main actor Jean-Pierre Bacri.

The exchanges were numerous about the main character Francis Sim. Of warm exchange, and with this touch of humor that characterizes the two artists !

Can you define the character of Francis Sim ?

– Michel Leclerc : It is a depressive happy, and the‘ambiguity of the film is to show someone who is not well, but which keeps a certain taste to walk up this slope, with ridges deep enough ; it does everything to not sink, scratches on the walls.

– Jean-Pierre Bacri : The character practice a lot the method Coue : by being positive, it has the possibility to stay in the world. It is not really lucid about himself, he was not aware of seem to be inopportune, not to be a bore. It behaves a bit as if he were in a schoolyard, it has the candor of a child who does not bother with scruples, who has no modesty or inhibitions.

Can you tell us what drew you to the character of Francis Sim ?

– Jean-Pierre Bacri : I tend to refuse a lot of films, it seems that I even refused roles that introduced me to Michel Leclerc, I do not remember more ! I absolutely do not want to be on the lists of the same actors that one finds in all the movies.

I was touched, overwhelmed even, by the distress of this character who is trying to survive. It has a form of depression altruistic. It is a role super stimulating but difficult to play, because it is not close to me, even if I found something that I had in me.


I also liked the idea that you can get at any age, at any moment of our life we can become aware of something that we had not appeared until then. With or without psychoanalysis, I am convinced that we can reduce the weight of all that hinders a life, what we carry from one generation to another : family secrets, our neuroses. I like the character because all his life he was beside her desire, of her pleasure and was prevented. It is in this respect that it is a film that is optimistic.

Would you say that it is a film about loneliness in a world of hyper-consumption ?

– Michel Leclerc : It’s actually a film about loneliness in spite of all the communication devices at our disposal to establish contact. It is a film that puts in parallel two solitudes : that of the browser Crowhurst and Francis Sim. Both will travel as well from a geographical point of view that time – for Francis on the paths of her past.

I wanted to talk about for a long time of this report the marks and I have tried to show this uniformity in the film, a sort of open-air prison, which reinforces the idea of loneliness. There was an echo of the commercial areas in the book of Jonathan Coe. It has not yet been sponsored, but a car brand has refused to appear since it does not recognize in our comments.

It is difficult to talk to a GPS ?

– Jean-Pierre Bacri : No it was not a difficult one because it reminded me of dialogues with some of the actresses who responded in some movies like machines (laughs) ! At the start, this way he has to talk to Emmanuelle the GPS is a joke, and then he attaches to it, and he begins to love it. But it worked well because Michel was in place of the GPS !

Francis Sim evokes on several occasions, Jean Poperen : is this because no socialist politician has agreed to turn in your film – such as Lionel Jospin in The name of the people ?

– Michel Leclerc : The book of Jonathan Coe highlighted a Labour leader that everyone has forgotten, so I wanted to do the same and I wanted to evoke a socialist that everyone, or almost everyone had forgotten. I chose Jean Poperen.

– Jean-Pierre Bacri : It is sure that for young people, it will only speak to person. Young people have Kev Adams, we Jean Poperen !

Jonathan Coe he participated in the scenario ?

– Michel Leclerc : Neither near or far, he trusted us, Baya Kasmi , and to me. I was just asked to cut a short scene in the editing, what I agreed to do.

Are you pleased with the result of your composition ?

– Jean-Pierre Bacri : every time I see myself in a movie, it’s terrible for me and the experience worse things. I don’t like neither my image nor my voice ! I stopped to look at me in the movies after Subway. I know that I should make the effort to watch the film to see the work of the filmmaker, but I admit that I don’t want account.

– Michel Leclerc : It is difficult for Jean-Pierre to do front-first in the presence of the public, he never even looks at the screen.

What are your plans ?

– Jean-Pierre Bacri : I write the script for a film with Agnès Jaoui, it is the first version. It will be funny and biting about an animator on the tv and it will be called a Public Square !

LIFE VERY PRIVATE FROM MR. SIM to be released in theatres on 16 December. Also read our review of the film here !

INFORMATION

Original title : life very private Mr. Sim

Realization : Michel Leclerc

Screenplay : Michel Leclerc, Baya Kasmi, based on the novel of the same name by Jonathan Coe

Main actors : Jean-Pierre Bacri, Mathieu Amalric, Valéria Golino, Isabelle Gélinas, Vimala Pons

Country of origin : France

Released : December 16, 2015

Duration : 1h42min

Distributor : Mars Films Distribution

Synopsis : Mr. Sim has no interest. At least that is what he thinks of himself. His wife left him, his job has left him, and when he goes to see his father in the depths of Italy, it does not even take the time to have lunch with him. It is then that he receives a proposal unexpected : to pass through France to sell toothbrushes that will “revolutionize the oral hygiene”. He took the opportunity to review the faces of his childhood, his first love, as well as his daughter, and make astounding discoveries that will reveal itself.
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