With Parallèles, Disney+ is making its first French foray into fantasy. A risky bet for the platform but also for the actors on display. Interview.
Disney+ is embarking on local production. After family weekend with Eric Judor, the platform takes a little turn towards the fantastic side for Parallels. Intended for a young audience, the creation intends to mix genres and inspirations, plunging us into the heart of a story of friendship between four teenagers.
Bilal, Romane, Samuel and Victor see their lives turned upside down when a mysterious event separates them and propels them into parallel dimensions. They will make every effort to understand what happened and try to go back to their world before.
In the casting, we find among others Thomas Chomel and Guillaume Labbé. After a passage on TF1 in the series Clem, the young French actor is given the lead role in this new Disney+ series. Guillaume Labbé, for his part, portrays a cop in search of an answer, who will quickly become an ally for the gang of teenagers. We met them. Interview.
Parallèles is the second French series on Disney+. It’s a big challenge for the platform, but for you too I imagine…
Guillaume Labbe: So personally nothing, I didn’t think about it at all, I approach it as a fiction like any other. For once, I’m not the main role so I’m protected. I’m super proud and it’s especially when I saw the first two episodes that I said to myself: wow, that’s so cool. Whether it’s Disney or another, but it’s true that Disney manages to do fairly mainstream and qualitative stuff.
Thomas Chomel : When I saw Disney I thought of all the times when I discovered the universe. I don’t have any particular pressure, but it makes me happy to have my little place at Disney.
When you read the script, what made you say: I want to be part of it?
Guillaume : There are several factors. I had already worked with the production company Empreinte Digitale, and I really like their work. I have also worked with Benjamin Rocher before and I greatly appreciate Quoc Dang Tran’s writing. These are subjects that speak to me about adolescence, the transition to adulthood, jealousy between children, parents, how we love our children and that we can make differences and what this can create in them. . The themes are approached hyper intelligently, entertaining and well constructed.
The character too, I love it, it’s not an actor who just passes on information. The guy there is what, he’s an investigator a bit like the Anglo-Saxons do, secondary characters who are thick and who live.
Thomas: When reading the script for the first time, it was the fantasy genre that attracted me. I’ve always loved that. I would also say the complexity of the Quoc script. I had to go back, take notes. It got me thinking, and I loved it.
Speaking of fantasy, you’re both more used to comedy and drama. Was this change of register difficult to tackle?
Thomas: Even if it’s fantastic, it’s a series that is very interested in its characters, what they feel, what they have in their heads. Beyond being interested in time travel, there is a more personal dimension when dealing with the characters. It was not so different from what I had been able to do before.
Guillaume : I didn’t approach it any differently. There is a scene with special effects, it’s very technical. But frankly, it was a sequence, otherwise it does not change the game.
Thomas: It’s cool to discover new things. I had never done fantasy, it allowed me to play in a different way and to be a little more technical and precise. I was trying to get my head when reading the script how to stage this in the best possible way.
Guillaume, your character navigates between two parallel universes. It must be rather complicated to hang up the wagons and know at the start of the shot which side of the mirror you are on…
Guillaume : It’s probably complicated for me than for other characters, because it doesn’t really impact what happens to me. I remain in an investigation where I am lost. He’s a hyper-rational guy, who does his puzzles and lives his little life.
Suddenly, he is lost, in both worlds. There is also the character played by Naidra, for whom he has feelings. He does not know how to flirt in both worlds. Otherwise, the script and the directors were there to help us understand things.
Speaking of characters, what were your inspirations?
Guillaume : I found on reading that there was a lot of comedy around this character. I immediately thought of the cop in Fargo, series and film. When we started talking about the look, my earmuff and my mittens, I wish I had gone even further with a huge coat.
These cops bring comedy and lightness, while not damaging the dramatic tension and the seriousness of the investigation. I got a lot of inspiration from that.
Thomas: Me not really, I tried a lot to focus on the relationships between the characters. If there’s one thing that inspired me, it’s mostly our chemistry in real life. We got along well so it wasn’t difficult to act as if it had always been there.
Finally, who would you be in a parallel universe?
Guillaume : Thomas, I can answer for you. You wouldn’t be a Formula 1 driver?
Thomas: Yeah, in car racing (laughs). I would have loved it.
Guillaume : I would be an actor, I love acting and writing so much. On the other hand, I would have a much deeper and guttural voice. A Spanish thing, but I’ll speak in French. (laughs). I would keep my sensitivity, but with this ultra-masculine voice.
Appointment on next March 23 on Disney+ to discover the first episodes of Parallels. Each week, it will be possible to discover a new chapter until the conclusion six weeks later.
Find Parallels on Disney+