Frédéric Sojcher, director of the film with Agnès Jaoui: “Toulouse is a city which has been shown too little in the cinema”
The director of “The Course of Life”, Frédéric Sojcher, returns to the shooting of the film which took place in Toulouse a few weeks ago and confides his passion for the 7th Art, the actors and Toulouse.
How did the shooting of your film go in Toulouse?
Wonderfully good and I was very happy to shoot with Agnès Jaoui first but also with Jonathan Zaccaï who is a childhood friend of Belgian origin like me, Géraldine Nakache who is wonderful and Stéphane Henon (“Plus Belle la vie” , Editor’s note) which has an immense range of play. There were also eight actors from the Occitanie region, some come from Montpellier, others from Toulouse and it’s really very important for me to also work with young actors since the film is about transmission. Several generations of actors were brought together in the film. And then I believe that we lived beautiful human encounters, cinema is the art of encounters, but with this film it was particularly true. I like to bring together actors from different backgrounds. Because I have above all a love for the actors.
You mention the actors but it goes beyond …
This is true because the first meeting is the one with the screenwriter Alain Layrac without whom there would be no film. It was he who gave me the idea because I read his book “The Writing Workshop” and I offered to adapt it to make a film by introducing a love story. And then there are also the meetings with the producers, the co-producer, the cinematographer Lubomi Bakchev who gave lessons at ENSAV and who is a very great professional. Finally, my great pleasure is to work again for the fourth time with Vladimir Cosma who will compose the music for the film.
How to define the subject of this film?
The first objective is that the film is aimed at everyone, not just cinema lovers. We shot a masterclass devoted to screenplay in a film school so we could say that it does not concern moviegoers, but not at all! The teacher embodied by Agnès Jaoui has a very particular way of giving screenplay lessons which always come close to her own life and therefore to universal feelings. And we will quickly realize that this course is totally unusual for a sub-text which is addressed to a person in the room, in this case the director of the ENSAV played by Jonathan Zaccaï. And this course will also resonate with students who also experience parallel intrigues.
Why did you choose Toulouse for this shoot?
First of all, Toulouse is a city that has been shown too little in the cinema, yet it is a very cinematographic city because of its settings, very photogenic. But it is also because there is a formidable cultural activity of the cinema in Toulouse through a very large number of festivals, the Cinémathèque de Toulouse which is, after that of Paris, the most important in France and sometimes with a programming better than that of Paris. I am also thinking of Serge Regourd University, which writes books on cinema, and I am thinking of ENSAV which has a unique status of public school attached to the University. All this created a tremendous synergy and our film could not have existed without this partnership with the school, without the help of the Occitanie Region and the support of the City of Toulouse. So it’s a 100% Toulouse film.