Rising French star Thibault Vinçon on sex scenes, favourite actors, and what’s next
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Starring in the striking erotic drama “Le Sentiment de la chair” (released in France on December 29), Thibault Vinçon is a young and promising actor. France24.com sat down with him for an exclusive chat.
He played an insidious literature student in “Les amitiés maléfiques” (“Poison Friends”) and a twentysomething musician in the romantic ensemble piece “Memory Lane”. Now 34-year-old, French actor Thibault Vinçon stars as one of the tormented lovers in Roberto Garzelli’s “Le sentiment de la chair” (“The Sentiment of the Flesh”), a dark tale of erotic obsession in medical circles in France. His performance earned him a spot on the list of Most Promising Actors selected by the Cesar Academy. France24.com sat down with Vinçon for a conversation about the challenges of filming sex scenes, the differences between young and old actors, and his projects for the coming months.
France24.com: How did you handle the very raw love scenes in “Le sentiment de la chair”?
Thibault Vinçon: I have to give credit to my onscreen partner, Annabelle Hettmann. She was trained as a dancer, so she has a particular relationship to her body. Our director, Roberto Garzelli, trusted us because he had decided to really choreograph every sex scenes. He had already mapped things out and we rehearsed them in advance. It’s not like he sat at the edge of the bed and told us “OK, go ahead and do something and we’ll see how it works out”. That said, there’s always room for improvisation ; love scenes need to feel fresh. But the director had a precise idea of the mood he wanted to create around those moments.
F24: Which actors influence and inspire you?
TV: There are actors whom I think are tremendous in France, but they’re not young actors. For example, people like Jean-Louis Trintignant or Michel Piccoli. I love their body of work and I find them fascinating because they’ve worked a bit in all genres and in different countries. I love older actors because their presence becomes magical. There are lots of young actors that I like a lot, but I see their efforts in their performances. Older actors are different. And in the United States, there are hundreds of actors that I find magnificent. I have a passion for Jack Nicholson. And in France, there’s one towering giant that everyone adores and that I love more than any other, and that’s Gérard Depardieu. He’s transcendent.
F24: What are your upcoming projects?
TV: I just shot another film with Emmanuel Bourdieu, with whom I did “Les amities maléfiques” (“Posion Friends”) a few years ago. It’s a TV movie, but I want to emphasize the fact that it’s a film nonetheless. It’s about the rise of anti-Semitism in France during the twenty years preceding the “Dreyfus Affair” *. The film is centred around Edouard Drumont (played by Denis Podalydès), the notorious anti-Semite who wrote “La France juive” (“Jewish France”). I play Bernard Lazar, a young Jew from Nimes who is secular and totally integrated but ends up becoming the founding father of French Zionism. He had a very dramatic and interesting life. I also did a movie directed by Djamshed Usmonov called “Le roman de ma femme” (“My Wife’s Novel”), which comes out in France in March. The film stars Olivier Gourmet and Léa Seydoux. Djamshed is a filmmaker from Tajikistan, but the film is a French production. It’s a sort of existential mystery about a man’s disappearance.
* A scandal that erupted at the end of the 19th century in France when a French Jewish soldier was convicted of treason. The allegations turned out to be false.