• Journalist and author Florence Aubenas chairs the jury of the “Panorama international” competition for the 3rd edition of Series Mania in Lille.

  • If she does not consider herself as a “series fan”, she is “passionate about” this “world under construction”.

  • For

    20 Minutes

    , the great reporter looks back on the close links between fiction and reality, between the press and the television industry.

Great reporter for

Le Monde

, Florence Aubenas usually looks where there is apparently nothing to see. The author has written on the women who clean the ferries providing the connection between Caen-Ouistreham for

Le Quai de Ouistreham

(Editions de l'Olivier, 2010), on women who are fighting to save their factory in

En France

(Editions de l'Olivier, 2014), on the murder of a postwoman in

L'inconnu de la poste

(Editions de l'Olivier, 2010).

Until September 2 in Lille, she will lay her sharp eyes on what, in essence, is made to be seen, a selection of eight series from around the world.

The journalist chairs the jury of the Panorama International de Séries Mania competition.

“I was very proud to be offered it!

", she says.

A section that she compares to that of the Cannes Film Festival “Un Certain Regard”.

"An incredible opening of horizons", she rejoices.

However, she has never caressed a career as a series critic, one of the rare journalistic exercises which does not tempt her.

“I shouldn't say it, I don't read reviews, neither in cinema, nor in series, nor in literature,” she smiles.

"I don't consider myself to be a serial fan at all"

“I don't consider myself to be a series fan at all, but what fascinates me about this industry is that it is under construction.

It is a young art, that we see in the process of being made, ”says the reporter, who watches series,“ in bed, with a computer on your stomach ”.

If she willingly refuses to participate in juries in her fields, "journalism and writing of the real", because she would then be "both judge and party".

“I feel comfortable judging an area in which I am not necessarily invested as a professional,” she confides.

Talking with Florence Aubenas, we feel that journalism at home is something visceral and, even if she does not explicitly mention it, we feel that she has also accepted this mission to satisfy her insatiable curiosity and to go observe. near the microcosm of series professionals, which she perceives a priori as a "laboratory".

"Today, there is a back and forth between fiction and reality"

The regular at editorial conferences is eager to participate in the deliberations and to compare her point of view with those of the "very great professionals" who form her jury, namely the Austrian actor Lucas Englander (


, the Israeli screenwriter Ron Leshem (

Euphoria, No Man's Land)

, director Laïla Marrakchi (

Le Bureau des Légendes, The Eddy

) and actress Linh-dan Pham (

Mytho, Or de lui


The International Series Festival was not mistaken in choosing Florence Aubenas. The links between reality and fiction, the world of series and that of the press are increasingly close.

Dr Death

, selected in the Panorama section and which starts September 12 on Starzplay, which is inspired by the true story of Christopher Duntsch, a Texan neurosurgeon convicted of serious malpractice leading to the death of several patients, is inspired by a podcast and investigative work by American reporter Laura Beil.

“Today, there is a back and forth between fiction and reality. We are going to use to tell reality - to tell, and not to fictionalize reality - means which can be those of fiction. A way of telling, a way of filming, a mode of narration like choosing a certain character to guide you. Fiction takes over the real, and it always has been, ”she comments.

When we talk about

A French Affair

, a series selected at the La Rochelle TV Fiction Festival to be seen soon on TF1, which will return to the Grégory affair, Florence Aubenas warns: “The intentions must be very clearly displayed. Yes, it's the Gregory affair, no, it's not the Grégory affair. Often, we take true stories where there is also an issue of innocence and guilt, legal issues. Don't joke about it. We talk about real people, judicial status, "are we guilty or innocent?" There, there must be fairly clearly drawn red lines. "

And to insist: “On the one hand, there are people who can be shocked.

The Villemin family said, “We weren't even consulted.” At the same time, they got hold of it, it's a public story that has been going on for years and I understand the intention. , we understand well that of this family which is entitled to respite. ”

"To be close to the world of Hollywood"

This back-and-forth between fiction and reality goes even further, when a journalist like David Simon adapts his investigative work, Baltimore, into a series with The Wire.

All over the world, the press is facing serious economic difficulties, especially in financing long and expensive investigative work, while investments in fiction continue to increase.

“And the Americans say, this is what saved us.

It's being close to the world of Hollywood, the adaptations, the series.

Today, many American newspapers are financed by the fact that articles or journalists, their reports or their investigations become series, explains Florence Aubenas.

In France, we are moving towards that, most of the newspapers including Le Monde are solicited.


Will the funding of journalism find its salvation in fiction?

"In what ways can we build bridges so that the content is paid?

I'm a deep journalist, I love print media, and I think it's good that the content is paid.

Journalists must take it up, ”said Florence Aubenas.

And to conclude: “I find the bridges that are being created between these different worlds and these different ways of working very interesting.

It is really a great chance, and for the televiewers, to have richer places, with precisely, a journalist, who will be aware of these red lines that a pure author does not necessarily have.

Everyone managed to win there.

It's a very interesting direction.



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