why Eddy Mitchell now prefers cinema to concerts

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The singer has stopped touring and now devotes himself fully to the cinema. He plays in A small miraclea comedy where a primary school settles in an EHPAD.

Eddy Mitchell lives up to his reputation. The rocker is silent. He sends each answer in a pithy manner, like a cowboy in the westerns he loves so much. In theaters since Wednesday ofA small miraclehe logically takes on the role of a taciturn man with brief and incisive replies.

Like many recent comedies – Retirement home, choir of rockersetc. – A small miracle honors seniors and nursing homes. In this feel-good comedy, inspired by a true story, elementary school students find themselves having to attend classes in a retirement home after the destruction of their school.

Eddy Mitchell once again shares the poster with Alice Pol after two parts of Old stoves (2019, 2022) and a Murder Party (2022). As if the old singer only wanted to tour with her. “It’s a coincidence,” he comments. “She’s great. We get along well. She’s a good actress. She knows her lines by the line.”

“The tours, I’m fed up”

But it wasn’t her presence that drew him in A small miracle, presented last week at the end of the Alpe d’Huez festival. “The character is depressed at the start and decides to go into an EHPAD. Once there, he has only one desire: to get out. The guy’s change of compass is great.”

He gives the answer to a string of child actors. Working with such young partners has its drawbacks. “It’s a bit boring, because it talks all the time. It gives its dialogue when it shouldn’t. But it doesn’t matter. They’re just kids.”

And at 80, Eddy Mitchell prefers that to concerts. Freed from his obligations as a tour producer, who “must make sure that the drummer hasn’t broken his arm”, he devoted himself fully to cinema. “It’s resting. It’s good. At the cinema, we come to get you. You know your text, you say it and then goodbye.”

“The tours, I’m fed up,” he continues. “I don’t want to travel anymore. The plane, the train, the car, finding myself in the evening at two o’clock in the morning at the hotel where I am offered a gourmet salad… that’s over, that.” No gourmet salad at the cinema: “At the cinema, the schedules are better made. They are different.”

No regrets

The roles, on the other hand, are not different. They even look a little alike. He collects the characters of cantankerous old people or grumpy grandfathers. “Because I know how to do it well, I guess,” he smiles. “It comes with age, too. But it’s not embarrassing. It goes with my physique.”

Forty years ago, he was offered more complex roles, like that of the perfidious Nono in Wipe by Bertrand Tavernier. Being in the background doesn’t matter to him. “If the role interests me, I do it.” For this reason, he refuses many proposals. “If I don’t believe in the story, I can’t go.”

With the cinema, he seeks above all to “have fun” and to “make credible” his character. There are roles he couldn’t play and refuses them: “I was offered a homosexual who does the Bois de Boulogne. I couldn’t.” He has no regrets for the roles he didn’t get. “They didn’t need me. It doesn’t matter.”

“Too talkative”

His next few months are full. In June, he will appear in Wow! by Bruno Podalydes. “It’s good, because it’s crazy. The scenario, you had to think about it. It’s a couple who decides to sell their house. When the real estate agency arrives, they kick it out: they don’t want to sell anymore . Not bad.”

He rarely has proposals of this caliber: “It’s rare, because it’s not very French. French cinema is not very crazy.” Murder Partya pastiche of a detective novel At loggerheadswas, even if Eddy Mitchell found the result “too talkative”.

He has two other film projects. And if the 7th Art bores him, he can always fall back on the 9th. A great fan of comics, he would like to write the script for an album. After a collaboration with the cartoonist Ralph Meyer (Undertaker), he hopes to work with Michel Blanc-Dumont, co-author of Blueberry Youth.

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