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"Someone Somewhere" ("Deux Moi") - Film Interview with Cédric Klapisch

by Emilia Ippolito

This Parisian story explores avenues of urban solitude and how two thirty-something year old deal with them

The action takes place in a run down middle class neighbourhood in Paris. Remy (Francois Civil) - a call centre worker - and Melanie (Ana Girardot) - a passionate cancer researcher still healing from the end of her former relationship are neighbours, and dealing with similar issues - with no knowledge of the other. Both embracing analysis : state-funded for Francois, private for Melanie, neither is willing to give into an obvious twenty first century reality : solitude is their main problem.

Both in denial and dealing with tedious and past damaging family traumas and issues, they try to find a remedy and finally opt for long-term therapy.

The final scene of this urban story is just as exciting as the opening one: no spoilers, however !

We have spoken to Cedric Klapisch at Cine Lumiere, where his latest film has closed the 27 French Film Festival in London. The UK audience knows him for his L’Auberge Espagnole (2002) and Les Poupees Russes (2005)- both successful bitter-sweet comedies

EI: Cédric, what do you make of the English title of your film : Someone Somewhere is very different from Deux Moi?
CK: Well, it’s quite difficult to find an English equivalent for Deux Moi, and we had thought of ‘Quelq'un, Quelque Part’ at the beginning, so we thought : ‘yes, let’s go with that ‘

EI: Your film is an urban one, focused on solitude and hazard, meeting people on Tinder, however it’s not particularly Parisian. Would you agree and could you see the narrative develop elsewhere?
CK: Yes, absolutely. It’s a story of urban isolation, I would say. The isolation that comes from being surrounded by millions of people, rather than by the country solitude. When you’re out in the countryside, yes, you may well suffer from solitude, because you actually are on your own. And yes, this story could happen in any big city.

EI: There’s a delicate balance between irony, aesthetics, and action here. How did you manage it?
CK: I worked with my co-script writer, with whom I’ve made five films. We literally worked together every step of the way, discussing everything in detail... it was the only way. Tone and atmosphere are the most relevant parts of the story

EI: Why did you choose Francois Civil and Ana Girardot as protagonists?
CK: I’d already worked with them in my previous movie and loved them! There was one problem: they’re nothing like the characters in the film; they’re both positive, enthusiastic, upbeat ... so there was some work to do

EI: One of the central topic of the story is therapy, how to approach it, etc. Do you think therapy is a trend or an actual remedy ?
CK: I totally believe in the actual positive effects of therapy, in particular in case of depression or illnesses related to our neurological system. I’ve been on therapy myself in the past, and both my parents are psychoanalysts.

EI: Any particular aspect of therapy you wanted to illustrate ?
CK: Yes, the fact that in France it’s not good to be on analysis; nobody talks about it: it’s considered to be embarrassing.. so I wanted to show this reality. France is very different from the US

EI: One more element of the story is meeting people on social media: what do you think about it?
CK: Of course it’s possible to meet someone on social media, however it can never be the same as seeing someone in person. At times I interview my potential technicians on Skype: even then, they will be different when I see them in person

EI: What are your projects for the future ?
CK: Another TV series and a feature . I’m working on both right now

EI: Any anticipation on narrative, location, etc?
CK: The series is still under embargo. As for the feature, the location is France but I’ve just started working on the story, so... no details yet!

 

FRA | 2019 | dir. Cédric Klapisch, with Ana Girardot, François Civil, Camille Cottin, François Berléand, Eye Haïdara, Pierre Niney, Simon Abkarian

 

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