Alban Ivanov and Fatsah Bouyahmed are the heroes of Imaginary Doctor, a comedy directed and written by Ahmed Hamidi, co-author of Le Grand Bain by Gilles Lellouche. Meeting with the team of the film which comes out at the cinema this Wednesday.
What is it about ?
Alex, aka DJ Wethu, is a nightlife star. On the verge of burnout, he goes to concerts all over the world… Until the day when, in the middle of a festival in Morocco, Alex has a bad fall and falls off stage. Immobilized on the spot for the time of his convalescence, he is placed under the vigilance of Abdel who dreams of becoming a caregiver. The problem is that it is not quite! An unexpected encounter…
A film based on the mechanics of the tandem that everything separates
This mechanism is a must in comic cinema, from silent cinema to closer to us, with references such as the films of Francis Veber (The Troublemaker). The imaginary doctor is based on this idea, that of two people who should never have met, and that everything separates… at least at the beginning of the film! One is a star DJ, while the other is a somewhat lunar character, an aspiring caregiver. To camp these two characters that everything opposes, or almost, The Imaginary Doctor has called on Alban Ivanov and Fatsah Bouyahmeda very complicit tandem, which is one of the strengths of this film.
Both had already met, had already worked together, in this case for The Little History of France. But as Alban Ivanov confided in an interview, both had “really want to make a feature film together“. And for this first film in tandem, they share the poster “really 50/50“.
Alban Ivanov very present in the cinema in the spring
Alban Ivanov continues: “We are not in the escalation of jokes or having the last word. With Fatsah, it’s not at all what we wanted to do“. For the actor, very present on the big screen in these months of April-May (Les Gagnants released on April 13, Les SEGPA released on April 20) and Les Folies fermières which arrives on May 11), the idea was “no longer be in situation comedy, and let us play“.
As its director tells us, Ahmed Hamidi, the inspiration comes from different tandem cinemas or even silent cinema like Chaplin, or the duo Laurel and Hardy. The screenwriter and director, who we knew so far as co-author of Les Guignols or the film The Big Bathreally wanted a comedy that mixes tenderness and humor, “be upsetting on screen as they can be funny” he adds about his tandem.
In addition to this comic duo, several actresses and actors come to participate. Whose Smain and Booder who embody the duo of police officers with questionable competence to endorse the cartoonish part of the film. “They’re comic book characters, those two. They make me think of a certain Algerian cinema where everything is caricatured. Smaïn and Booder make me laugh. Physically they have something similar. The cops they embody belong to the Gendarmes family in Saint-Tropez or La Septième compagnie. These two sympathetic simpletons do not influence the story, but they bring comedy“, says Ahmed Hamidi.
The Imaginary Doctor is released in cinemas this Wednesday, April 27, 2022.
Comments collected at the Alpe d’Huez Festival 2022 + taken from the film’s press kit. Frame: Constance Mathews / Editing: Julien Ceugnart