AlloCiné met up with Arnaud Ducret, who was a sworn member of the Monte Carlo Television Festival, to discuss lies with him, which is broadcast on TF1 this evening.
AlloCiné: Tonight we find you in the TF1 Mensonges series. How did you get into the project and what did you like about it?
Arnaud Ducrete: Producers Mark Brunet and Marie Gumond sent me, telling me it was adapted from an English series. I read it for the first time in French. We were in total lockdown so I couldn’t tell them “I’m sorry, I’m overwhelmed”. Like. I also watched the English series to see the atmosphere, and I liked that too. I said okay. I know they also wanted Audrey Floro. I still give him a quick phone call because we know each other, to tell him I’m going to play the guy. I told her I’d be happy if he was with her, so he pushed things up a bit. She is a great friend. It is very simple and works hard.
I think you are very successful at playing contrast with this type of character.
This is all lies because the two characters are like this: we don’t know if she’s crazy, is she crazy or not. Is she telling the truth or is this just nonsense? So that was all I loved to play.
Mensonges is a French remake of the English series Liar. Don’t think I’m wrong in saying adaptations are popular on TV right now? We can quote a man of honor, Luther, Gloria, I promise…
Yes really. It is true that Liar, for example, is not available on a platform, nor has it been widely seen. It is not always easy, you have to choose what you want to modify about the series. Despite all the respect I have for my comrades, is that really the right thing to do sometimes? I’m not sure.
In Liar, there was this somewhat uneasy atmosphere. I get the impression that the new version is trying to do the same with a particularly great job in music.
Ah yes it’s really great music. There is a real symphony orchestra played. It’s funny that you noticed this point because the other day while listening with Mark, I thought the music was really good. Since it is a symphony orchestra, everything “licks”, as they say. I am delighted to be a part of this project as Mensonges are part of the popular TF1 Premium Series and I am glad they thought of me.
There are also decorations that make you dream!
Ah yes the big house I own is a crazy thing. Besides, there is a little anecdote like any other: there were large windows. And one day I was asked on stage. I arrived like that, with my glasses on and slammed my face against the door. It was a boom, everyone turned around. I could have hurt myself. The shooting could have stopped.
The original series provided so much information about the characters that we learned halfway through almost everything about that famous night. Here we know from Episode 2 who is lying and who is telling the truth. Did that allow you to work more deeply on your character?
True, he was more in a liar, I don’t know anymore why one was so quick to rehab, but it worked. It spins, which is great. Anyway, I’ve played every position in the first class, and I haven’t tried to have the inconsistency you’re talking about. We play and it’s up to people to say if he’s guilty or not.
How would you describe this character?
Manipulator, very great magician. I don’t want to say much, but what’s interesting about the series Lies is that they actually have everything to be together. He’s not some kind of fat pig boy. So you’re wondering why it’s going like this.
The Liar series sparked controversy at the time, and some English media accused her of showing an overly bi-manipulative version of the situation and portraying the female character as manipulative. “A woman is a crooked liar, and a man is a victim whose whole future is destroyed.” Is this something you understand?
Oh no I didn’t know. Yes she is a very victim of the liar, it hurts. We took care of that with Audrey. It quickly becomes painful, but that’s okay too. It still happens now especially within families. When something happens and we don’t listen to the girl. Karen Viard did it well in The Tickles. That’s right, it exists, and it still exists. Audrey wanted a more battered wife, so she dumped the supposed abuse she was experiencing a bit. Which disturbed the English press in advance. They weren’t wrong about that.
Have you talked to the writers team about the ending, to keep it the same or maybe change it?
No no, we’ll find stuff from the original series. We are more or less walking the same line that the English were doing. We are here with different groups. We shot at Collioure by the way, we felt really good there. We were almost locked up so we could walk around anyway.
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