Omar Sy in Lupine version for Netflix: “Me, an imperfect father (like him)”

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Sweet look, affable manners and elegant posture: Omar Sy | he tries to hold back the emotion by staying still on the armchair, but small movements betray his (understandable) state of agitation, even at a distance, via Zoom. He is the absolute protagonist of the new French series-event Lupin, the events of the gentleman thief revisited in a modern key from 8 January on Netflix.

The interpreter of Almost friends, after steps in various American blockbusters, from X-Men a Jurassic World, returns to center stage with the responsibility of giving life to a literary icon.

In the story he plays a single dad, Assane, a Parisian like many who lives and falls behind with alimony to his former partner. But woe to stop at appearances: behind that ordinary aspect (if anything one might think that Omar Sy’s stature goes unnoticed), the man hides a brilliant and criminal mind. He really thinks he’s a scammer, almost the very reincarnation of Lupine, the book his father gave him before he died.

Already an orphan of his mother, as a boy he had to face the shame of the unjust accusation of theft against his parent, who then committed suicide (are we sure?) In his cell. The employers of the time, a rich and powerful couple, had hired the man as a driver and then blamed him for the disappearance of a diamond necklace dating back to Marie Antoinette.

25 years after that, Assane is still tormented by doubts and therefore, in search of justice (or revenge?), He scores a series of brilliant and obviously dangerous blows. Just look at the Louvre behind him in the poster of the series to understand that the stakes are really high.

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In one of the first scenes Assane confesses that he doesn’t feel like a good father. He has five children with his wife, Helen, who was married in 2007 after ten years of engagement. You come from very different backgrounds, but have you ever shared those insecurities?
“Assane says he’s not a perfect father and neither am I, in fact I really don’t think there is anyone in the world. However, I do not have his insecurities, perhaps because after 20 years as a parent I have learned what is important, that is, do what you can, strive to give your best ».

No advice?
“Zero. No recipe, no rule: the parent learns to do it while you do it, when you are no longer at the center of your life and the first thought of the day, but someone else ».

What kind of son is he instead?
“Like Assane, a loyal, obedient and respectful of parents’ teachings.”

Her parents gave birth to eight children. What did your worker dad and waitress mom tell you about work ethic?
“They both killed each other with work for a few pennies, but in them I have always seen great dignity in the way they face life’s challenges. And they have always succeeded, they didn’t have much, but they always made it enough for us, without ever complaining about those difficult conditions or about life in general ».

Did you also have a soft spot for Lupine as a child?
“I used to see the Lupine cartoon at the time, but I also read X-Men comics, as well as being passionate about any show that came from the United States. My hero was The Six Million Dollar Man. ‘

Omar Sy |

You have a brilliant career and a wonderful family. What would you like to be remembered for?
“The details don’t matter, as long as the memory of me arouses good feelings in those who have known me.”

Assane is smart and shrewd, but he can’t keep a woman. Is it the fault of fate?
“For me, love is timing. When we know him he tries to find a healthy balance between private and “profession”, but there are many questions about his past that haunt him and they all concern being a father, a son or simply a human being. In the discovery of the truth he makes a personal journey in search of himself, a man who has long been considered a nobody ».

In the current climate and in the light of Black Lives Matter, how much can racism be countered with greater inclusiveness in art and culture as well, as in this series?
«Personally, I believe that ours is first and foremost entertainment, so the concept of the messages to be launched comes second. What I feel like saying that we are not yet at the point where skin color does not matter, as long as there is discrimination talking about it will never be enough. And Lupine is an excellent opportunity to show it, so it must be taken absolutely ».

Acting aside, how does it fare on the rest?
“First of all I would like to point out that there are a lot of things where I am a landslide, but I can manage in two, in the sense of humor and in the kitchen.”

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