Young Generation Filmmakers with Talents Out of China – Smiling Directors: Julien and Victor @ Paris

When we are appreciating the world village on the internet, everyday or even every minute. I am surprised to be aware of that how limited we really know about each other. Hollywood is not the whole world. Talents of Cannes, Berlin and Venice film festivals are not exclusive. And Karwai Wong and An Lee are not the only brilliant directors in Chinesespeaking areas. So I interview good talent all over the world to help update your perception of Film Industry nowadays.

3 years ago, Julien Aveque started to work as a filmmaker after his graduation from business school.

Last year, Victor Hérault accidently saw Julien’s work via Facebook and he was attracted.

They met for coffee, and then became partners, in both creative and business fields.

After one year of cooperation in film, they achieved their 1st important success in an international film festival – Filmapalooza of 2018:

  • 2nd Place of Best Film
  • Best writing (honorable mention)
  • Best directing
  • Best actress

And they are going to Cannes! Of course!


 Tell us how did you start to make films?

J: 3 years ago, I started a community called Aveque Le Sourire together with Félicie Robert, who is an actress and also my schoolmate during Business School, then we started to make films. And there are approximately 10-15 people now.

At the same time, I was running a production company on my own for commercial videos working closely with Purée Maîson, a communication agency, who shares the office with us right now.

2 years later, I met Victor, then we started a new company named Avé Kéros till now continuing the business with Purée Maîson.

How did you become partners?

V: I became quite interested in acting at that time, beginning to play in short films. And then I tried to direct my own films and write my own stories till one day when I saw what Julien’s doing (both the community he created and also the work he directed) on Facebook. I was amazed by the screw, the technique…. I wanted to be part of it. Then I asked him out and invited him to be the producer of the short film I was directing.

What do you think of having a partner?

J: It feels great that we exchange ideas and inspirations. We share the same taste but we are different. I guess we are very complementary.

Sometimes when I say something that he does not like, he brings us to another idea.

What makes you to be a filmmaker after the business school study, Julien?

J: That’s exactly as what I planned. In my opinion, management skill (time, people and money) is very important to produce a film, it’s just like a project management. I believe I should be learning it If I want to create my work. After all, it’s a very hard industry to work in.

Meanwhile, I didn’t forget to learn acting in Drama School Cours Florent at night.

Victor, I know you are also a composer and an indie musician. What kind of music are you playing?

V: I used to do indie rock music. As for the music of the film, I will customize, e.g. I made western music for the movie we made in Lyon.

Filmapalooza 2018

 How many times have you participated 48 Hour Film Competition?

J: 11 times for me, and 3 times for Victor. I started from 2014 in Paris, and then Paris again in 2015. In 2016, we went to 4 cities and this year, we had 5 movies in 5 different cities. In total, we won 4 city winners.

J&V: It’s like a tradition in 48 hour community in France, travelling around different cities and making movies.

What preparations do you do before each 48 Hour Film Competition?

V: Basically only the transportation and living/shooting place. We prepare the car and rent the house ahead. But this year for our winning film ZU, we asked around days before on where we can use to shoot, and we obtained a doctor’s place.

How about the working time allocation for the film ZU?

J&V: Usually, we start writing at 8pm Friday night and finish around 3am the next day. Then we prepare the team in the morning till the noon when we start to shoot.

However, for ZU, the beginning point of shooting was 3 hours later than what we usually do, since it cost us too much time on preparing the team, moving the team.

And we finished shooting at 7am on Sunday morning and spent 6 hours in editing only.

V: When the shooting almost finished, I left to compose and record the music and vocal on Sunday morning. (The film ZU was co-directed and co-written by Julien and Victor.)

How did you come up with the story?

V: We use “Ass Cancer” as the drawer, and then develop the story based on the use of firework.

Any special habits of your team when you are making 48 hour films?

J&V: We prefer writing down all the dialogues, because we love dialogues.

How is the team working together?

J&V: The most important thing in our team is team spirits. We always eat together.

Even there are clear roles of each person, they will help with catering or cleaning up whenever they are free. And everyone can bring up their ideas for the film.

What were you expecting before joining Filmapalooza 2018?

J&V: Going to Cannes is what we expected. Unbelievably, the final achievements are way beyond our expectation and the award of Best Directing means a lot to us.

What do you think differentiates your movie ZU from the others?

J&V: Maybe because we talked about a very serious topic in a very light way. And we have very good actors!


What is your dream in this industry? And what is the plan to realize that?

J&V: Now our dream is to make the feature film and to get paid for what we do.

We hope to find the producer, who would like to make our feature film when we have 2 short films going to Cannes this year. Besides ZU, our another short film Négligés was selected for Cannes Short Film Corner as well.


Who is your favorite Chinese director?

V: Karwei Wang and Stephen Chow. The film Happy Together is my favorite.

(From right to left: Olivia, Julien, Victor, Michelle, Jing Li. Special thanks to Jing Li (Director in Paris) and Michelle for helping with background explanations and translations whenever in need)


“Aveque Le Sourire is the first team I officially interviewed in France, which is a very good start. Julien and Victor are both talented and smart, they are proactively looking for what they want and execute with intelligence and wiseness. They pay attention to the key and are not misled by the surroundings. I believe they will achieve their goal very soon.”

 Interview by: Olivia Yang

Beverly Huang
About Beverly Huang 2 Articles
Has been working with China Indie Film since 2016 providing services in Marketing, Data Analysis and Art design as well as event organization and planning.