Met at the La Rochelle Festival, Sarah Farahmand, the producer of “Here everything begins”, looks back for us on the success of the TF1 soap opera and teases us the intrigues to come. Including the revelation of a big secret about Maxime (Clément Rémiens).
DashFUN: The first anniversary of Here Everything Begins is fast approaching. How do you see this first season?
Sarah farahmand (producer): I draw a pretty crazy balance sheet. When we think back to the development of the series, which took place in full containment in March 2020, and we see success today, we realize every day how lucky we are.
The results are really very positive, at all levels. Public success of course, audiences, critical reception. But also the fact that the series is often cited, beyond the articles that there are on the daily soap operas, on the themes of society and the questions of gender or sexuality that it addresses. And then we are very proud to reach all audiences. We all know, within the team, someone who watches Here Everything Begins, regardless of age. We are delighted to reach so many people.
In your opinion, is it the theme of cooking that makes viewers who had never been interested in daily soap operas before become addicted to Here It All Begins?
I have the impression that there is a mix between the theme of the kitchen and the fact that we have chosen to be in a closed and unique place. It’s a risk, of course, and it remains, even if today we are a little more reassured than a year ago (laughs). But the people who perhaps had prejudices about the daily soap operas certainly said to themselves “Ah, there is no police station, the hospital, the school like in the other dailies”. This obstacle being crossed, they were more attracted. And then they got caught up in the force of Here it all begins. I think it’s more like that.
And it is sure that being launched last year, in November, in full containment and in full curfew has helped. It was a date that made everyone feel good at that time. And people got hooked. And not that since we then gained new viewers.
On this first year of Here It All Begins, is there a plot that you are particularly proud of as a producer?
The one that I find the most emblematic is the intrigue around the Delobel secret. Scripture is very rich because there is both the birth of a great love story between Greg (Mikaël Mittelstadt) and Eliott (Nicolas Anselmo), and the revelation of a heavy family secret. I find this plot really very successful.
But I also really like the very soap arches, very “life of the institute” that we have been able to do, such as the end-of-year exams, the entrance exam, the inheritance stories, the shenanigans of Louis and de Teyssier. It’s pure soap and there was this a priori that in France we could not do pure soap. We finally prove the opposite and we have a lot of fun in this register.
You mentioned the Delobels. Do you confirm that we will soon see Greg’s parents on the show?
That’s right. There is going to be an intrigue around the end of October-beginning of November during which they will need to come back to the castle.
Since the beginning of the series, it is in the DNA of Here everything begins to explore the family past of the different students through the narrative arches and to introduce us to certain members of their respective families. Can we therefore expect to discover Eliott’s parents soon?
We know that this is a strong demand that we will try to meet. I can’t say when. But since there is a demand, it must be maintained. Little by little Eliott mentions his parents. Does this prepare something? Is he lying? Does he really have a trauma related to his parents? We think about it.
One of the challenges of season 2 has obviously been to bring new blood through new first graders, like Amber or Jasmine. How did you think about this renewal?
We did a big one-day brainstorming session with the authors who created the series, Coline Assous, Othman Mahfoud, and Eric Fuhrer, as well as other authors supervising the series. And every time we brainstorm – we do two a year – we always do the same thing: we throw all the ideas that come through our heads – good, bad, jokes, it will never pass at 6.30 p.m. on TF1 – and then we sort it out.
And from that we bounce with each other and …