On the occasion of the broadcast of “Superpapa” this evening on TF1, actor Michaël Youn returned, for AlloCiné, to his conception of parenthood and explains to us how this romantic comedy differs from other Christmas TV films.
Head to the mountains, this Monday, November 13, for the TF1 audience, who will be able to discover Superpapa, a new Christmas TV film.
In this heartwarming romantic comedy, Michaël Youn plays Christophe, the main character, a father-hen who has been very (too) protective since the death of his wife four years previously. Until the day when a strange gift falls upon him: Christophe can now hear the thoughts of teenagers, including those of his son. Christophe will then very quickly become disillusioned…
For AlloCiné, Michaël Youn agreed to take off his skis and return to the filming of this TV film like no other.
Allociné: What memories do you have of the filming? How did it happen in particular with Jenifer et Gabriel Diefenthalto whom you give the most reply in Superpapa and who did you play with for the first time?
Michael Youn: I’m not going to say that it was an enchanted parenthesis because that would mean that the rest of life is not pleasant, but finding yourself skiing, at the moment when everyone is starting to want to leave again on the weekend, with a group of extremely noisy but extremely friendly teenagers, eating raclette with Ludovik, Virginie Hocq and Jenifer, frankly… It was an extremely delicious moment. If my whole year could be like that, I would only do that, filming, filming and filming…
And yet, it was off to a bad start: director Sophie Boudre, poor thing, got the project back three weeks before the start of filming because the previous director failed us. But ultimately, the filming and the TV film reflect his image, at once tender, caring and joyful.
The TV movie is called “Superdad”. What is a great dad for you?
A great dad would be a dad who manages to behave and support his child(ren) without generating frustration, neurosis or psychosis. But there is no such thing as a super dad. Freud said: “Whatever you do with your children, you will do it wrong anyway.” And in fact, we cannot raise a child without creating, unfortunately, frustrations. When we’re present, it’s too much, it’s stifling. When we’re not good enough, we’re lacking. No matter what happens, whether you’re super cool or principled, nothing will ever happen the way you want it to.
You are the parent of two children, Seven, who is 12, and Stellar, who is 4. How do you go about being as much of a great dad to them as possible?
I try to be a super cool dad but I realize that I remain above all my parents’ son, which means that there are things that make me hysterical, like, for example, when my daughter doesn’t do her homework or loses her things. At your age, it’s difficult, from time to time, not to start shouting because you’re tired and you realize that you don’t spend enough time with your children, so you’d like to that everything goes faster so that we can benefit more from each other…
On television, we have seen you, in recent years, several times playing a father figure for a fiction, whether in Runaway: prostitute for love, The day I burned my heartor Red bracelets…
It’s true ! It’s crazy because I have – or rather I had – the image of an “enfant terrible”, of a slightly turbulent teenager. I think I must exude something empathetic. There must be something tender in my eyes that makes people want to associate me with children or teenagers more than with other colleagues. In any case, I’m delighted!
For you, is the father a particularly interesting type of character to play?
Ah, it’s rich, yes! Already, being a father gives depth to existence, so it necessarily also gives depth to the game. For example, I asked myself a lot of questions when we were filming the film BDE. I told myself that playing a 45-year-old guy who doesn’t have a child in his life is not trivial, there is necessarily an explanation. Either you couldn’t have one, or you didn’t want one. But in the writing and interpretation of the character, you cannot act as if life had been made like this and that suddenly, at 45, you start to ask yourself the question.
The Christmas TV films that flood our screens every year are essentially American. Superpapa is, conversely, one of the rare French productions of this genre. What can we bring, in your opinion, to this type of highly formatted and proven fiction?
I think we’re not afraid to tackle subjects that are a little bit harsher than usual in Christmas TV films and to look for greater originality in the script. For example, in Superpapa, we treat the classic “romantic comedy” aspect of Christmas TV films in the background and not in the foreground, to favor the story of this father who hears the thoughts of teenagers. It’s even more of a comedy about teenage crisis. Even if these teenagers don’t shoot themselves or burn bus shelters, we feel that things are bothering them, that they are not well, or not understood.
In the end, the packaging remains the same, and that’s a good thing since people are looking for this sweetness, this tenderness, this kindness in Christmas TV films, but the gift inside is different from what they got. usual to see in this type of TV movie.
As, in Superpapa, your character is able to read the minds of others, will you be able to read ours to know your last question?
I have a feeling your last question is going to be, “If you could read our minds, what would our last question be?” [Rires]
You are strong… ! So, as we didn’t know if it was a composition role, we still had another question planned, just in case…
Ah ! [Rires] I’ll listen to you in this case!
Do you already know where we can find you after Superpapa?
Yes, in lots of things! On Amazon Prime Video, with the sequel to the film BDE, and perhaps also in a film, an action comedy, with Jean-Claude Van-Damme – it is not yet signed –. On TF1, with a detective series [Flashback, comme nos consœurs del’ont révélé il y a quelques jours]. At the cinema, in a film by Nicolas Vanier about the end of the world [C’est le monde à l’envers !, en salles en octobre 2024]. And I will also finally be reunited with the sequel to the film Fatal. It took me fifteen years to find the title of the sequel but since I found it, I absolutely want to shoot the film. On the different music streaming platforms, I will be back with the new Fatal Bazooka album…
To whom there is, moreover, a little wink in Superpapa!
Yes ! I found it funny! I was not present on set that day. The teams contacted me and asked if they could add him, I said yes, of course.
A year 2024 which promises to be rich on a professional level therefore…
Yes even too much ! I’ll have to calm down, for Christmas!
Comments collected in Paris, November 8, 2023.