Before giving the role of Lucie Aubrac to Carole Bouquet in the eponymous film, Claude Berri had chosen Juliette Binoche to interpret the French resistant. But after three months of filming, the latter was finally fired. Discover the reasons for this dismissal which marked Juliette Binoche a lot.
Lucie Aubrac: Claude Berri recounts a figure of the Resistance
On February 26, 1997, the film Lucie Aubrac directed by Claude Berri is released in French cinemas. As its name suggests, it is a biopic on this essential figure of the French Resistance. To write the feature film, Claude Berri based himself on the book written by the latter They will leave in intoxication: Lyon, May 43, London, February 44published in 1984.
It recounts Lucie Aubrac’s fight during the Second World War to snatch her husband Raymond (also resistant) from the clutches of the Gestapo, risking his life.
To carry this film, Claude Berri trusted two of the greatest French actors of the time: Carole Bouquet and Daniel Auteuil. However, it is another great actress who was to interpret the role at the start: Juliette Binoche.
Juliette Binoche finally ousted from the film
At the end of 1995, Juliette Binoche leaves the shooting of the film The English Patient by Anthony Minghella (for which she won the Oscar for best supporting actress in 1997).
On her return to France, she was chosen by Claude Berri to play Lucie Aubrac. But after three months of filmingthe actress is finally replaced by Carole Bouquet.
On January 29, 1996, the newspaper Liberation in an article named “Juliette Binoche resists Claude Berri“reveals that the actress and the director have a “dispute” and that the departure of the latter is a “serious hypothesis”. Hypothesis which will eventually be confirmed since Juliette Binoche is replaced by Carole Bouquet.
Also in this article, Liberation explains that the actress saw herself as a heroine of the Resistance, but that Claude Berri wanted to tell a love story. A strange explanation given that Juliette Binoche certainly did not discover the script at the time of filming.
However, two years later, the actress had confirmed that she did not feel in tune with what the film was about:
I knew Lucie Aubrac and for me it was imperative that the truth be returned to her. But I did not feel in tune with the subjective character seen by Claude Berri
she entrusted to The Express.
“It was very painful”
Years later, the memory of this dismissal still leaves a bitter taste to Juliette Binoche. Thus, she confided in 2016 in an interview given to Paris Match having felt betrayed by Claude Berri:
I experienced the filming of “Lucie Aubrac” as a profound betrayal, because no one on the team, apart from the dresser and the hairdresser, had warned me that I was going to be fired. It’s true that there were twenty people who suffered the same fate as me during filming, but I had the impression of going through a war with its resistance fighters and its collaborators.
Frequently questioned about her dismissalJuliette Binoche confided in 2014 to the magazine First that this bad experience had nevertheless nourished her:
It was very painful because it happened in an insidious way. I have been betrayed. And, somewhere, that’s the subject of the film. So I feel like I lived it. That’s where it’s very strong: this film abortion allowed me to intrinsically feel a state of war.