To play Commander Jacques-Yves Cousteau in the feature film “The Odyssey”, broadcast this Tuesday evening on France 2, Lambert Wilson had to undergo extensive physical preparation. Focus.
The feature film L’Odyssée, released in theaters at the end of 2016 and broadcast this Tuesday evening on France 2, evokes the life of the famous commander Jacques-Yves Cousteau. A biopic worn by Lambert Wilson who, to lend his features to this iconic character, had to undergo intense physical preparation.
Throughout the filming, Lambert Wilson thus submitted to a draconian regime in order to get as close as possible physically to Commander Cousteau, who was very thin. “Lambert was constantly hungry but it was at this price that he became Cousteau”, says director Jérôme Salle. “I would add that at the start, he does not have the morphology of his model at all: it is his thinness, this dryness of the body that creates the illusion. “
“What was difficult with Cousteau was that you had to both be skinny and do very physical things, like diving”, Lambert Wilson notes. “The problem is that, below a certain weight, you weaken. Me, I had to go underwater carrying these very heavy oxygen cylinders with 14-hour filming days so I had to keep enough energy. “
“I lost 10 kilos fairly quickly, without regaining anything during the film”, adds the actor. “Moreover Jérôme operated a permanent monitoring of my plate because he found that I was too strong! I do bodybuilding regularly and my body must be like that of a diver: thinner than muscular.”
Lambert Wilson presents the particularity of having played in several biopics. In addition to Cousteau in L’Odyssée, he played Charles de Gaulle on screen as well as Abbé Pierre in Winter 54. “Dn this kind of exercise, you have to understand quite quickly, director and actors alike, that what we are going to give to the public is a sensation, the vibration of a character, not an imitation “, declares the actor.
“At the end of Winter 54, I still did not look like Abbé Pierre but the best compliment came from the Companions who told me they felt it through my interpretation”, he continues. “In The Odyssey, I certainly resemble Cousteau a little, but I hope that we will perceive a veracity, a sincerity and above all that those who knew him will be convinced.”
Lambert Wilson tells us about “The Odyssey”: