There are aperitifs that stretch over weeks, even months. The one we took with Fanny Sidney started in the fall, when the temperature was just starting to drop and the actress-director was in the middle of editing/re-editing her Brigade mobile series. It ended in May by telephone, when the seven episodes were put online on, which was postponed several times.

We meet her in the middle of the afternoon in an improbable place, an empty kebab between Gare du Nord and Gare de l’Est, in Paris, not far from the room where her fitter cuts and sews while she slips away the time a few photos and several black teas. The Camille Valentini of Dix pour cent unwittingly cultivates a youthful look in jeans-sneakers, a ponytail and a bare face. However, she is 35 years old, two little girls, a flawless career – Cours Florent, La Fémis, directing section -, bottles and some solid convictions about her profession.

If her face has become familiar since the success of the series created by Fanny Herrero, few viewers knew her directing work until the success of Jeune et Golri, the series by Agnès Hurstel (broadcast in the fall and still visible on OCS) of which she directed the eight episodes. “As I get older, I see a lot of friends go to “Un apéritif avec”…, she says, her eyes sparkling behind her funny glasses. I was almost like “when is my turn?” »

Brigade mobile, her first solo project, was born from the desire to write for Marie Lelong and Louise Massin, two comedy friends met during their formative years, lost sight of and then rediscovered through the detours of their respective careers. In 2015, the three young women saw their paths cross again on the Loulou web series, a wacky and feminist farce about motherhood (still visible on, of which Fanny Sidney directed several episodes. “I took a long time to accept that comedy was a noble genre. In France, if you don’t do contemplative work, you’re worth nothing. »

During a “well, well-watered” aperitif, the desire for a common project is reborn. Fanny Sidney then knits a story that would have as a backdrop these landscapes of Auvergne where she spent her holidays as a child. She imagines a professional duo made up of different characters and a context that forces them to collaborate. “I wanted to see two women uncomfortable in their uniforms, one because it’s too big, the other because it’s too small. I came across this initiative of having gendarmes drive around in motorhomes in the countryside and I said to myself: this is the story. »

A female career

Fan of Parks and Rec, Fleabag and The Comeback, the young woman gives Brigade mobile the form of a slightly artisanal mockumentary, between Striptease and Documentary Now. “No gold coins, so obliged!, she laughs. We had to adjust our device to our budget… There is nothing more frustrating than composing shots à la Nolan and having 3 bullets to film them. »

From Loulou to Mobile Brigade, the career of the young woman is essentially combined with women, without her ever asking herself the question of knowing why. As often, it is in childhood that we must go and find answers. Fanny Sidney’s is organized around dreams which she only now realizes contained “a part of the impossible”. This is how, before wanting to shoot, little Fanny, 11 years old when France won the 1998 World Cup, would have seen herself as a professional footballer. In the Hauts-de-Seine, where she grew up, she struggled to find a club that would welcome her. Finally, she spent five years in a women’s club in Bagneux, and the experience proved to be founding.

In addition to her taste for competition, which means that today she does not hate castings, she retains from her years in the field “a relationship to the team and to adversity, a collective sport thing”. “Even today, when I’m working, I can’t help but hear: ‘Look around you, look for solutions!’ Football is a marginalized space for women, and I have been allowed to occupy it. It was a small conquest. She pulls herself together. “No, a maxi-conquest. »

When she takes off her studs, this daughter of a photographer and a computer engineer is preparing for a baccalaureate with a theater option and compensates for a cinematographic culture that she considers weak with eclectic tastes, which make her navigate between The Summer of Kikujiro and The infernal Montparnasse Tower. Once out of high school, the young woman trained in the game at Cours Florent. She joined the free class, the elite of the school, where she met her future professional family. “But it was trashy,” she says of the tense atmosphere in which classes take place. “I can’t move on if someone yells at me, it drives me crazy. At La Fémis, she breathes better, even if one day it is slipped to her that she will “never have style”. “Fortunately, it gives fuel,” she said, without hard feelings. His first student film is a musical; the second, “a handheld camera thing, à la Dardenne”. She searches for herself and ultimately “loves having no style.”

need for kindness

At a time when the doors continue to open around her – in addition to Mobile Brigade, she finished filming Mauvaise pioche this winter, a series with Vincent Dedienne and François Damiens, soon to be broadcast on Disney –, the young woman claims a form of fragility and its need for benevolence. She confides with great modesty on the sexism of the environment, on what is imposed on female characters, the difficulty of being an actress and not wanting to be just that. There is anger in his voice, frustration, resentment against this pre-

A few hours after we left her, she nevertheless returns there, like a dog licking a wound. She leaves two voicemails, millennial style, “and I promise, after that I won’t bother you anymore.” His voice is still shaking. “Sexism is like sun capital,” she pretends to joke, “after a while your body gets saturated, and so does I.” I can’t take it anymore, hearing things like “Your female character needs to be rejuvenated”. Not long ago, I heard again “just because you’re a MILF doesn’t mean we have to know”! »

A few months later, the warm welcome given to Brigade mobile, including in the region, where the series was screened, puts balm in her heart, and it is a relieved woman who answers the phone. “The period is a little sine… but nothing is more awesome than working with friends, although I know how cutesy it is to say that. We had a few tune-ups, and it was wonderful to be able to overcome them. But what she especially wants to talk about right now is the production company she is setting up, a label under which she will develop her own ideas. His first project? A series on the couple, obviously.