The film distributor TF1 International’s website offers a few more details about the upcoming Petit Spirou movie. It has the production details already reported, as well as what appears to be a still from the movie itself, and a short description of the story (very mild SPOILERS):
Update: Also, there’s an interview with the director, Nicolas Bary, and some posters showing the other actors in character…
Forced by family tradition to attend a bellhop school, Little Spirou decides to plan an adventure like no other!
Like every hero, the intrepid Spirou was once a kid. And when you’re a kid, you have to obey your elders. Like his entire family before him, Little Spirou is destined to become a professional bellboy. So when his mom announces that he’ll be starting bellhop academy next year, Little Spirou decides, with the help of his friends, to make the most out of their last days together, and to confess his undying love to his sweetheart Suzette. To do this, Spirou and his buddies organize an extraordinary adventure that she will never forget!
No doubt remains about why Little Spirou became a journalist adventurer when he grew up!
Based on Tome & Janry’s comic books – Published by Dupuis
The concept of Little Spirou going off to “bellhop academy” must be something the film adaptation has added for the sake of a feature film story.
I’m also reminded that last week’s issue of the Journal de Spirou (#4101) carried a short interview with Nicolas Bary:
The Search for Little Spirou
We still have to wait a bit to see Le Petit Spirou in movie theaters. Meanwhile, we go behind the scenes with the director, Nicolas Bary. This week, we talk about casting. Finding the right Little Spirou was not easy.
Bary: It took six months of searching, and we only succeeded at the last moment! We saw hundreds of kids. We had casting sessions in many different towns. And we also did “in the wild” casting: assistants went out looking in places where kids hang out. That’s how we found Sacha – in a park! We brought him to Paris to audition, and the rest is history!
Who is he, this young comedian?
Bary: His name is Sacha Pinault, he’s eleven, he comes from Angers, and this is his first film. As soon as they got a look at him, the whole production team was convinced. And he’s chestnut-haired, even though he has freckles.
It’s also important to get Vertignasse and Suzette right!
Bary: We found our Vertignasse rather quickly. We cut his hair and dyed it black, put some glasses on him, and there we had Vertignasse in the flesh. For Suzette, it wasn’t easy to find a girl who was willing to play lovestruck. Children are so easily embarrassed! It took them some time to get over it with Le Petit Spirou.
For the adults, did you have an ideal cast in mind when you wrote it?
Bary: The first idea we had was Pierre Richard for Grandpa and François Damiens for Mr. Mégot, and both of them said yes! And then there were other lucky breaks, like with Philippe Katerine, who plays Father Langélusse and who brought in his own comedy universe. The common point for the adult comedians is that they bring real sensitivity to their characters. They are appealing without falling into caricature.
The magazine also has a small reproduction of a poster with Mlle. Chiffre (Gwendolyn Gourvenec) and M. Mégot (François Damiens), which can be seen in this photo along with other promotional posters from the film: