A shooting on instinct
The birth of a project
I met Axel at the beginning of 2017, during a day on the circuit.
I liked his nuts attitude and his approach to life that day.
One evening, we met at his house and I suggested the idea of making a film about him, his passion and his life as a pilot.
He explained to me that he would take part in the French championship, and that the idea of a film did not displease him, if he could in turn use some images for his promotion via social networks.
So I started with the idea of making a feature film about his entry into the world of competition, following his season and his adventures.
I started writing the scenes of the film and trying to build a script.
Project launch and initial challenges
In the first race of the season, Axel explained to me that he had to focus on the competition and that we could not follow the basic scenario.
It was a shock, to the point that I thought I would abandon the project.
The only solution that was then available was to switch to an alert observer, without knowing whether the story that would unfold could then create an interesting narrative arc.
In this first round, there was a problem with the French runner-up.
A strong rivalry was emerging between Axel and him.
From then on I felt a strong public appeal for Axel, and a sense of injustice for a judgment in favor of the former champion.
I understood that a new narrative was being born here.
This conflict and the strong tensions experienced at that time gave the material to re-write a new scenario.
A ray of hope
It was during the second round of the championship that I understood that something interesting was being played in Axel’s run.
His victories continued at a frantic pace, sometimes against very great drivers, and still this image of outsider facing much more experienced drivers and also having much more powerful cars.
His rivalry with the former champion on this round also took an unexpected turn, with an action of Axel in the semi-final which will then push him to be excluded from the French drift championship.
The story was written, and I was already imagining how I could write the story through interviews later, tracing the highlights of the pilot’s rise.
Path to ascension
Axel’s journey continued, passing through Japan, Europe, France again…
I decided to follow him until the end of his 2017 season, live and broadcast the year he became the popular pilot he is today.
Even today, I sometimes wonder how, on a simple intuition, I could accompany the launch of the pilot who will later become the hope of French Drifting around the world.
Thank you to him for having trusted me, for having believed in this project, and for having been able to allow him to reach his end.