These are two silhouettes that we’ve seen regularly on the edge of the L’Etrat grounds over the past season. Camera and boom mic in hand, we didn’t get a good handle on the project from the stands, it makes sense this week after talks with one of the film’s two directors ” The center “a documentary on the education of Saint-Etienne.
Realized by Alexandre Donot and Raphael RiviereFor more than a year, this film follows everyday life in the Greens’ training center, from the educators to the club employees and the players, immersively in a place closed to the general public.
Appointment made this Thursday, November 17 with Alexandre DonotCo-director of the documentary to talk about the making of the project: “We started contacting the club in 2016, the film really took shape during the Covid-19 period. We started filming in summer 2021. Through discussions and explanations about what we wanted to do, we were able to really integrate. When we went to shooting sessions, we slept on site to be in contact with the supervisors, supervisors, coaches (…) These are not environments, who like the cameras, often with suspicion because there are many problems, the young people and the club, our rhythm is not that of TV or radio journalists, we took our time, we were quite persistent, we had to show that we not doing comedy, this is not an institutional documentary, we asked them to trust us.”
On the club side, the communications director Thomas Grangerindicates that ASSE has shown itself to be open “Reveal certain things without being under camera pressure to highlight the education and training work of the training center.”
The project is an immersion, it wants to be different from what is usually done with documentaries about football and tracking a training center. Alexandre Donot To explain : “We wanted to break with what we’d seen before, such as documentaries like ‘À la Clairefontaine’, which mainly bring the players forward through passion and learning a craft. We wanted to see how people live together, we didn’t really want to look for one or two specific people. We were more inspired by the work of Frederick Weisman, who has spent his life filming institutions. We looked more in that direction at the level of our inspirations, when we started the film he asked himself about Gambardella who could give us the possibility of a storytelling film (editor’s note: elimination in the first round vs OL 1-2 ), being eliminated meant we focused on a more humane project rather than engaging in a sporting challenge that would have been artificial in the film. I think this film is de stabilizing for people who are used to watching sports documentaries. We really started with something very collective, while maintaining very intimate moments, I am thinking in particular of a strong sequence at the staff meeting, which is about the departure or not departure of the young people from the centre.
The documentary will be broadcast for the first time on France 3 Auvergne-Rhône-Alpes on Thursday November 24 at 11:30 p.m. and then on Public-Sénat on a date not announced by the channel at the moment (December). It will also be available online and in reruns.