The Independent film distributor, Swipe Films, will be releasing the award-winning French movie, You Will be My Son. You Will Be My Son is a love-letter to the joys of wine. Set in the sumptuous surrounding of a famous Chateau and vineyard in St Emilion, it stars Niels Arestrup. The film is directed by the legendary Gilles Legrand, who is best known as the producer of Jean Pierre Jeunet's MicMacs. I sat down with Gilles Legrand to find out more about his latest projesct.
So come on then I said, how did the film come about? Was it a drunken chat over a glass of wine? *Laughs* "The conjunction of two ideas. On one hand the desire to make a film. I'm in a universe that attracts me, that the wine and vineyard work in large wineries and secondly, the vision to discover more about the world of wine, I immersed myself in guided by a friend, journalist Gasparotto. We have travelled to many vineyards in Burgundy Bordeaux, and soon I realised that all these great winemakers had a common concern, that of transmission a double title. Knowledge transfer and inheritance. And that this could lead to serious conflicts of families. So I imagined a father who did not want his son to succeed him and about who he chooses to continue his work. And little by little other characters have appeared to me. I decided to not only focus on this but also other characters including the manager of the estate and his son, and from there it was born."
So why did you ask Delphine De Vigan to co- write the script with you, what was your decision to do that? "This is the second great event, there have been many on this film. I did not write along, I need to share and confront my ideas. We produced "No and Me" adapted from the novel by Delphinede Vigan. One dayby chanceI decided to make it part of my subject which immediately excited me. She had never written a script before, but she had five novels with great assets and energy and ability to create characters with a complex psychology. I did not want a melodrama, but a cruel tone is sometimes comical. It was often exhillarating to invent characters who display obnoxious behaviour and situations of stunning cruelty"
So did the relationship with your father influence you in this film? "Yes ofcourse but this story is not autobiographical. That said any adult parent- child relationships appeal to me and I see how, for lack attention or encouragement, or requirement misplaced towards our children, we can easily impose an unbearable presure. We always want more or better for our children. We expect them to be geniuses or small so that they walk in our footsteps. But in this film we pushed the situation to a head and we asked many other questions.
So other than the family relationship what interested you in the world of wine? " Everything, I love everything except bad wine! Obviously I like wine, the diversity of the grape varieties and flavours. I love the vine, gnarled and generous, the scheduling and constraint that it required to plant them, the geometry and architecture of the vineyards. They offered magnificent opportunities. But I also love the cellars, arging cellars under aches and especially citercian cellars, alignments of barrels and bottles, silent underground, the smells, materials, colours, light. It's simple, the vine and the wine awaken the senses, and the side effects are intoxicating. The physical intoxication ofcourse, but also the power, money, talent and passion. It is a very demanding environment".
As a business did it interest you? "Yes, I took a lot of time to research and visit vineyards, to feel, listen, taste, look, document and of course learn. It is great to be immersed for nearly three years in a world like this, to make friends, understand this business. I'm probably not quite able to make wine, but I know the basis. And I drank a lot!!!"
And on that note we had a bottle of Closerie de Fourtet. Parfait!!!