Valérie Lemercier: “I wrote Palais Royal! For Catherine Deneuve”

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Valérie Lemercier: "I wrote Palais Royal for Catherine Deneuve"
Gaumont Columbia Tristar Films

The comedy returns tonight on TFX.

TFX takes advantage of the exit ofAline At the movie theater to rebroadcast one of the pretty hits of Valerie Lemercier, at 9:05 p.m .: Royal Palace!. Released in the cinema in 2005, this comedy brought together 2.7 million curious in theaters. First had met the director for issue 346, and here are some anecdotes she told Sophie Grassin and Olivier de Bruyn about the creation of her quirky and unforgettable family.

“I love Catherine … Catherine Deneuve. As an embodiment of elegance, there is no better than Catherine in Beautiful day, by Buñuel! I wrote Royal Palace! for her. She inspires me. With Catherine, no need for a disguise, she is just royal! I also like Julianne Moore. And Isabelle Adjani. When we see again Camille Claudel, we realize its excessiveness: it accomplishes things that nobody does. Brigitte Bardot, too. In Contempt, of Godard, we get a little bored when she’s not there, right? Liz Taylor also amazes me. She plays with her whole body, which is fundamental for me. It probably comes from my work on stage. I play various characters there: a small, a large, a fat, a man, an old lady … You can make a lot of things happen only with your body, without words or artifices. For this reason, in the cinema, I prefer wide shots. There aren’t many close-ups in Royal Palace! I like to see the hands, the legs, the postures … It says a lot. “

“Prince Charles. He’s handsome, well dressed. I like his slightly red skin. I don’t understand why people are making fun of me. I like Charles, that’s all. When he plays polo, you can see. that he’s not a bit of fat … My passion for this universe probably comes from the photos of Cecil Beaton. Especially those of the Duke and Duchess of Windsor. People who have spent their lives doing well. dress…”

Valérie Lemercier looks back on the strange creation of Palais Royal!

“When we started to write Royal Palace!, the first titles were: “Too good”, then “A heart of gold”. At first, we imagined the heroine as the wife of a minister or a notable. But that would have made it necessary to film banal things, polling stations … It was not funny. I am very sensitive to the plastic aspect of things, to light … A kingdom obviously offers more possibilities. And then, everything is forbidden, immutable, nothing can change. However, the straitjacket is always an excellent framework for a comedy. In addition, royalty is a family unit. “Cell”, that clearly indicates what it is …

Lady Di as a model? I thought about it from the start of the project, but not only. I was also thinking of Bernadette Chirac, Cécilia Sarkozy … In short, the “Women of”. Those that we first seek to hide, then that we push to the fore as soon as they can be used. What is the place of a woman next to a famous man? What is his image? Its use by the media? Its metamorphoses? On the evening of the second presidential election in Chirac, Place de la République, the image of Bernadette set back behind her husband marked me a lot … “

Trailer of Royal Palace! :

Aline: How Valérie Lemercier became “Celine Dion”

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