Indiana Jones, Man vs Wild, Pirates of the Caribbean, Lara Croft… Here are almost all the references to the adventure comedy Jack Mimoun, thought “like an Advent calendar”. We tell you more!
What is it about ?
Two years after surviving alone on the hostile island of Val Verde, Jack Mimoun has become an adventure star. The book recounting his experience is a best-seller and his television show breaks audience records. He is then approached by the mysterious Aurélie Diaz who will bring Jack Mimoun back to Val Verde to train him in search of the legendary sword of the pirate La Buse. Accompanied by Bruno Quézac, Jack’s ambitious but reckless manager, and Jean-Marc Bastos, a mercenary as disturbed as he is unpredictable, our adventurers will embark on an incredible treasure hunt through the jungle of the island of thousand dangers.
Filled with references to personalities and films that have entered pop culture, Jack Mimoun and the secrets of Val Verde should appeal to the generation born in the 80s, or at least nurtured in 80s culture, ofIndianaJones at predator. “I like to say that this scenario is written a bit like an Advent calendarexplained to us Malik Bentalha, co-writer and co-director of the film. When you look there are always small references. Even in the title. Val Verde is a fictional town that was invented by a screenwriter named Steven de Souza. He wrote Commando, Predator… When they needed to name an imaginary country or island, they said Val Verde.”
Jack Mimoun with Malik Bentalha: what is the link with Predator?
In detail, what are the references that inspired Malik Bentalha and his co-writers? Response elements.
The first unmissable reference is obviously Indiana Jones. It is this film that served as the spark for the project. “I saw the whole Indiana Jones series on TV again and I took as much pleasure in it as in my youth. I then wondered if we had such an adventurous hero in France and, since Belmondo and Jean Dujardin in the role of OSS 117, I realized that no“, details Malik Bentalha.
“In the United States they have Indy, Benjamin Gates, the Goonies or Jumanji!”he continues “So I started looking for partners who could follow me in this somewhat crazy project – Eric and Nicolas Altmayer and Pathé said banco – and I quickly found a name that immediately made them laugh: Jack Mimoun. Then we thought about the casting with the desire to surround myself with people I admire: Benoît Magimel, Jérôme Commandeur, Joséphine Japy, François Damiens… My ambition was to make the spectators dream, that they laugh and escape for the time of a movie.”
My ambition was to make spectators dream, to have fun and escape for the time of a film.
The hero’s look is of course very inspired by Harrison Ford, but also “by all those 1930s serials” that inspired Indiana Jones’ look. “There is Very Special Envoy with Clark Gable, Journey to the Center of the Earth too… full of inspirations. There is a great costume designer behind Indiana Jones, Deborah Nadoolman.”
And add: “Indiana Jones is a bit like the movie our parents forbade us to watch. When we got there… monkey brains, heart wrenching! It’s true that it remains while growing up: at the beginning, we are shocked. As soon as we talk about Indiana Jones, there are these flashes that come back“, emphasizes Malik Bentalha.
The film’s co-writers, Florent Bernard and Tristan Schulmann, are “traveling bibles of american cineman” according to Malik Bentalha.”They talked to me about Clark Gable as well as Benjamin Gates or Harrison Ford. For my part, I saw and re-watched The Man from Rio and then of course, I brought my personal touch… My idea was also that Jack Mimoun grow as the plot progresses by feeding of those who accompany him on his adventure“.
“As soon as I had an inspiration, we talked about it with Florent and Tristan then we gave it a shot. The writing of the scenario began at the end of 2017 by keeping a kind of small logbook in which I noted all kinds of references for the characters, the costumes: Journey to the center of the Earth, Under the biggest tent in the world, The secret of the Inca, The Parade of Death“, he continues.
From Indiana Jones to Pirates of the Caribbean…
The film’s music also evokes Spielberg, with a style a la John Williams or Hans Zimmer. Malik Bentalha wrote while listening to these composers in his head, especially the Pirates of the Caribbean theme. “The music is, in my opinion, a crucial element of the film’s narration! I really wanted to find the idea of the pop film of the 80s: whether for the soundtrack, the poster, (in reference to Drew Struzan)... “
Another pop culture icon, Lara Croft. “She was one of the inspirations. We wanted to make Aurélie Diaz (the role of Joséphine Japy) a real adventurer. A true lover of adventure, who advocates beautiful values, who is really reckless, courageous. We didn’t want to do the cliché of the actress in the jungle who breaks a nail. We wanted it to arouse vocations in little girls, whether they wanted to become explorers or adventurers.“Kathleen Turner in The Hunt for the Green Diamond also served as a model.
Jack Mimoun: Malik Bentalha and Joséphine Japy elected the greatest adventurer and it’s a surprise!
Finally, the last essential reference, the nod to adventure shows like Survivor, Koh Lanta or Man vs Wild. “To tell you the truth, I also drew on Mike Horn’s side by going to watch one of his lectures given at the Rex, I read his books, I watched Bear Grylls shows from which I was inspired for the snake scene at the very beginning of the film!“
Jack Mimoun and the secrets of Val Verde by Malik Bentalha and Ludovic Colbeau-Justin, with Malik Bentalha, Joséphine Japy, Jérôme Commandeur, François Damiens and Benoît Magimel, has been on view since Wednesday October 12, 2022.