The strange language of the Dothraki from Game of Thrones, the cult dishes of Hannibal, the sharp teeth of a monster from Doctor Who, or the hyper realistic wounds from Hippocrate, none of this would exist without the men and women who tirelessly work for our favourite shows. 

Whether they are culinary stylists, dental technicians, professional screamers, or choreographers, they reveal the joys and challenges of their often-overlooked professions in this unprecedented immersive exhibition. 

Discover the secrets of the small screen and enter the backstage area! Behind the Scenes invites you to discover the journey of extraordinary artists who will be present to meet you, accompanied by strange creatures, dazzling costumes, sensory experiences, and a few surprises. 

Will you leave with a new vocation? 

Curator: Charlotte Blum 
Set Designer: Ophélie Leray 
Production: La Lune Rousse 

Follow these icons for more information 

Immerse yourself in augmented reality by adding an immersive experience to your visit! On Stage 02, scan the “Animate Me” QR codes and let your phone open a new dimension by animating the objects around you! 


Meetings, masterclasses, demonstrations, student challenges… Note your upcoming encounters with the unsung heroes of TV series! 

  • From Saturday 16/03 to Friday 24/03, 2 PM-6 PM 
    Exhibition, Stage 05 
    Wound application and injury makeup by students from Acte Académie school. 
  • On Saturday 16/03, then from Tuesday 19/03 to Friday 22/03, from 2 PM to 6 PM 
    Exhibition, Stage 01 
    ESMOD Challenge: Students from ESMOD Roubaix, a school of fashion creation and business, step into the shoes of series costume designers. Inspired by your favourite TV series and historical references, they reinterpret period pieces in a contemporary way. 
  • Saturday 16/03, 1:30 PM 
    Tripostal, Main Stage 
    Masterclass by Janice Poon (food stylist) with tasting of horrifying recipes. 
  • Sunday 17/03, 11:30 AM 
    Le Majestic Cinema 
    Screening of two episodes of Hannibal, “Apéritif” (1.01) and “Mizumono” (2.13), commented by Janice Poon (food stylist) 
  • Monday 18/03, 2:30 PM 
    Tripostal, Main Stage 
    Masterclass by David and Jessie Peterson (language creators) 
  • Wednesday 20/03, all day 
    Exhibition, Stage 05 
    Makeup and prosthesis display by Acte Académie: creation of a Clicker from The Last of Us
  • Thursday 21/03, 2:30 PM 
    Tripostal, Main Stage 
    Masterclass by Valérie Adda (costume designer) 


Costume Design 

valérie adda

The Bonfire of Destiny, Women at war, Murders in…, Victor Hugo, Enemy of the State, Alice in Paris, La Bicyclette bleue… 

How to create an iconic style 
After studying fashion design and costume history, Valérie Adda started working in cinema at the age of 20. She climbed the ladder from “button seamstress in the workshop” to head costume designer and then costume creator for film, series, theatre, and web productions. Considering costume as “a new skin to enter another life,” she works with contemporary and period pieces with equal pleasure. 

“When I read a script and see a character, it’s as if they are being drawn next to me. I see the colours, the silhouette. It’s an almost physical approach.” 


  • Meeting with Valérie Adda: 
    Masterclass on the Tripostal Main stage, Thursday 21/03 at 2:30 PM 
  • ESMOD Challenge: 
    On Saturday 16/03, then from Tuesday 19/03 to Friday 22/03, from 2 PM to 6 PM 
    ESMOD Roubaix students step into the shoes of series costume designers. 

Women at war Corset

“I like to convey messages through costumes. In Women at war, I wanted to illustrate what the prostitutes feel. I had the corset of Marguerite de Lancastel, played by Audrey Fleurot, painted by an artist. I had a bird placed in a cage, symbolizing the feeling of confinement of these girls. But we left the cage door open…” 

Image : The corset worn by Audrey Fleurot was hand-painted by the patina expert Valia Sanz.

“You should never feel the work on the costume on screen; it should blend into the story and serve it. If it is visible, then it failed.” 

“In a TV series, we meet the characters in a slice of life. Their clothes don’t come from a sewing machine or a store. The aging process, the aging of clothes, is very important. Upfront, often, we dye the materials with one, two, or three colours to give them weight, life. Then we have a patina workshop to wrinkle, rub the material, put wear marks. We add weight to the pockets to deform them, we scratch the elbows, the armholes, or the necklines. The garment, even brand new, can be soaked in pigment baths or worked with a spray gun.” 

“We talk about costume but, for me, what comes across best on screen is the skin. The skin brings life, texture, it’s very important to highlight it. Skin adds dynamism, calm, sensuality, so I work on the costume trying to be as accurate as possible and to bring it out.” 

“In general, when we start a TV show, there is a character bible that describes them in depth. We learn who they are, what they aspire to, their mentality, where they come from. I use it a lot to create costumes that help the talents embody their character.” 

“Most of our little-known professions have to do with psychology, especially in costume. We have a very ‘motherly’ side; we dress the actors; we enter their intimacy. You cannot do this job if you don’t love actors. You also need to have great sensitivity and be attentive.” 

“When I work on period projects, for TV, cinema, or theatre, I consider it fiction and I take liberties. Conversely, if I do docudrama, I have a ‘duty of remembrance’ that I respect, and I am very precise. In fiction, we respect the period while dusting it off. For me, the balance is found between the figuration that respects this ‘duty of remembrance’ and sets the scene clearly in the meant period, and the main actors for whom we will make side steps.” 

“The work on image projects (series, cinema) and theatre is very different. On television, the camera is very close to the characters, we will go into detail: a stitch, a colour, an earring. In theatre, the viewer is far away, we must exaggerate, to be more visible. This is what I do on Mathilda May’s plays where I can create costumes by going to visual extremes while making them part of everyday life.” 

Images: Costume design for the play The Banquet, conceived and directed by Mathilda May. 

“I always create mood boards for my costumes. I search on the Internet, in libraries, in museums to see paintings and immerse myself in eras. I have a huge library at home. I also watch movies and documentaries. I always need to feed my imagination.” 

Images : Mood board and samples for the costumes of Rose Morel (Manon Clavel) in Winter Palace (coming soon on Netflix). 

Images : Details of the jewellery and the dress worn by Audrey Fleurot in The Bonfire of Destiny. The aesthetic of the interior scene shows the collaboration with set decorator Hervé Gallet. Camille Lou, Audrey de Bona, and Audrey Fleurot wore their series costumes on the red carpet of Séries Mania in March 2019. 

Images: The costume worn by Jean Benguigui in Le petit blond de la casbah, directed by Alexandre Arcady, consists of a close-fitting bodysuit, legs that you slip on like pants, a belly pressed onto the body, and a vest for the arms. Pockets filled with beads give the illusion of fat moving. Here, on set with Tony Egry, set designer. 


Manufacturing estimate from the Sylphe workshop for Women at war corsets. 
Sewing was done by Joëlle Verne, co-founder of the Francophone Corsetmakers Association. 
Working document © Valérie Adda 



To whom do these iconic silhouettes belong? 

On the rack: 
Costumes designed by Valérie Adda for The Bonfire of Destiny, Women at war and Winter Palace

Pregnant woman’s corset for Women at war  
Drawing from the sadomasochistic aesthetic, this corset was chosen for its seams on the sides. It’s a pregnant woman’s corset (worn by Eden Ducourant) that widens as the pregnancy progresses. Since the prostitutes in Women at war were penniless, Valérie Adda thought they scavenged corsets from everywhere, including their grandmothers’ closets, bringing visual diversity to the chaos of Women at war‘s brothel. 

Pleated green dress for Lady Isobel (Astrid Roos) in Winter Palace (coming soon on Netflix) 
Steps in the preparation of the dress 

Dress for Madame Huchon (Josiane Balasko) in The Bonfire of Destiny
Although hoop skirts were tending to disappear at the time when the series takes place, Valérie Adda chose to integrate one into Madame Huchon’s silhouette, an older character, to highlight the customs of the time according to their age in the script. 

Costumes on the mannequins: 
Marguerite de Lancastel (Audrey Fleurot) in Women at war
Louis XV as a child (Gabriel Hallali) in Louis XV, The Black Sun
Mother Agnès (Julie de Bona) in Women at war 
Alice de Jeansin (Camille Lou) in The Bonfire of Destiny 
Lady Isobel (Astrid Roos) in Winter Palace

“On set, the costume team arrives before everyone else, with the stage management. Costumes for each actor are placed in covers with accessories, everything is listed with fitting photos and cards. Upon arrival, the actors settle in the HMC, which stands for ‘dressing, makeup, hair’, and we rotate with these positions to prepare everyone.” 
Images: Costume preparation at the HMC on the set of The Bonfire of Destiny

Mood boards for Mother Agnès’ costume (Julie de Bona) in Women at war s
Mood boards for Alice de Jeansin’s costume (Camille Lou) in The Bonfire of Destiny

ESMOD Challenge

ESMOD Roubaix students step into the shoes of series costume designers. Inspired by your favourite series and historical references, they reinterpret period pieces in a contemporary way.


Saturday 16/03, then from Tuesday 19/03 to Friday 22/03 
From 2 PM to 6 PM 

Saturday 16/03: Bridgerton (1811-1820) 
Tuesday 19/03: Peaky Blinders (1919-1930) 
Wednesday 20/03: Mad Men (1960s) 
Thursday 21/03: The Bonfire of Destiny (1897) 
Friday 22/03: Transatlantic (1940) 

Since 1841, ESMOD has been the 1st school of fashion creation and business. 
ESMOD has 19 campuses worldwide, from Tokyo to Seoul to Oslo or Dubai. The school offers higher education in all sectors of textiles and fashion industries. Some of its former students work in the film, series, or theatre industries. 
More information: www.esmod.com 
Séries Mania thanks ESMOD Patrimoine for the photos and videos from its heritage collection. 

  • Saturday 16/03 – Theme: Bridgerton  
    Period reference in the ESMOD Heritage collection: 
    Empire ceremonial dress with white train, white linen embroidered with a garland of flowers (1805) 
  • Tuesday 19/03 – Theme: Peaky Blinders 
    Period reference in the ESMOD Heritage collection: 
    Evening gown, Moroccan crepe, and silk velvet (1932) 
  • Wednesday 20/03 – Theme: Mad Men 
    Period reference in the ESMOD Heritage collection: 
    Day ensemble: sunbathing dress and camisole, printed cotton twill (1950-1959) 
  • Thursday 21/03 – Theme: The Bonfire of Destiny 
    Period reference in the ESMOD Heritage collection: 
    Transformable dress, day version: skirt with a sweeping train and daytime bodice, brocade silk satin (1890) 
  • Friday 22/03 – Theme: Transatlantic 
    Period reference in the ESMOD Heritage collection:
    Widow’s dress with embroidered sheaves of wheat in boutis, black wool crepe (1940) 


Food Styling 


Images:  Star Trek: Discovery, hors d’œuvre on the Enterprise 


  • On 2/19/13 11:03 PM, BRYAN FULLER wrote:  
    Hannibal visits Will in the hospital and has brought a meal for him.  
    Will has just come out of a heavy fever.  Right now, the script reads:  
    HANNIBAL:  This is a creamy Amaranth porridge of cruciferous vegetables, legumes,  
    and gluten-free grains to promote healing and fight inflammation.   I would love to have something better — essentially Hannibal’s version of chicken soup.  
  • On 2013-02-20, at 8:01 PM, JANICE POON wrote:  
    How do you feel about Silkie chicken soup? Thai style…  
    Silkie chicken is a new superfood trend but has been prized in China for its medicinal value since the 7th century. It makes a rich amber broth. It’s black skin, black flesh and black bones are highly recognizable to people familiar with Asian food. And creepy in a gorgeous way.  
    In Chinese Traditional Medicine, one would add red wolfberries, ginseng, ginger, red dates and star anise.  Some chefs add Coke for a caramelly sweetness. And we all know the health benefits of coke.  
    The Chow Bar in Greenwich Village braises Silkie chicken with a red Thai coconut curry. We could add bok choy, a cruciferous veg. Would you be good with a soup like that?  
  • On Feb 20, 2013, at 8:12 PM, BRYAN FULLER wrote:  
    Sounds good!   
  • On Feb 20, 2013, at 8:41 PM JANICE POON wrote:  
    Great! I’ll sketch it up.  
    Dr. Google just told me that Silkie chicken is a powerful antioxidant that slows rate of damage to cellular proteins in the body. It is very high in Carnosine, a protein found in high concentration in the brain. Also high in iron.  
  • On Thursday, February 21, 2013 12:28 AM BRYAN FULLER wrote:  
    What is going to be most cinematic?  Silkie chicken soup?  Chinese book?  The amaranth sketch looked good.  I just want to make sure it’s the most cinematic dish and with interesting specificity.  
  • On Feb 21, 2013, at 1:23 AM, ROBYN STERN [ThinkFoodGroup] wrote:  
    I think that the silkie chicken would look great!  Depending on the breed, some of the flesh can be a bit stringy and/or gamey.  Traditionally it was served as a medicinal soup/broth, but now, just as Janice mentioned, chefs serve the black-boned bird in curries and even as confit.    

 Here are some interesting facts I found about the Silkie:  
Marco Polo gave the first accounts of silkie chickens in the late 13th century. As trade routes between East and West were established, the Silkie was brought to Europe. Records have shown that in the Netherlands, they were sold as the product of crossing a rabbit and a chicken! Traditional applications:  Black-bone chicken is used for treatment of hectic fever, diabetes, treatment of asthenic disease (a condition of nervous debility supposed to be dependent upon impairment in the functions of the spinal cord - soreness of waist, leg pain), aiding in the treatment of pulmonary and heart diseases. Laboratory tests show that the Taihe chicken contains certain hormones, blue pigment and amino acids which are required by the human body. These factors can increase blood cells and hemoglobin.   

  • On Feb 21 at 1:51am BRYAN FULLER wrote:  


To which series do these more or less appetizing bites belong? 


Hannibal, Foundation, Star Trek: Discovery, The Shape of Water, The Handmaid’s Tale, American Gods

How to make an edible head 
Janice Poon has practiced numerous artistic professions, from advertising to interior decoration, sewing, painting, writing, and illustrating children’s books. Now, she imagines and cooks the dishes eaten by our favourite characters while adapting to the dietary restrictions of the actors. Her goal: to help them get into character. 

“The heart of my work is to help the actors get into character through their reaction to food.” 


Meetings with Janice Poon: 
Masterclass and signing on the Tripostal Main stage, Saturday 16/03 at 1:30 PM. 
Commented screening of Hannibal at the Majestic, Sunday 17/03 at 11:30 AM. Two episodes, “Apéritif” (1.01) and “Mizumono” (2.13). 


  • STEP 1: Script Reading 
    What is the atmosphere of the scene? Food can enhance it depending on how it is presented on the plate.
    What do the characters feel in the scene? Whether it’s seduction, threat, or competition, food can reveal their motivations. 
    If the food is not specified, what would be the most suitable dish for the scene from a cinematic perspective? 
  • STEP 2: Research 
    I search for information and inspiration in old books and magazines, or on Google for quick answers and images. 
  • STEP 3: Concept Creation 
    I make sketches and drawings, and create mood boards to focus my ideas. 
  • STEP 4: Presentation  
    The director may request a sample of the plate to be presented, but generally, a detailed sketch is sufficient. 
    I respect the requests and remarks of the props department, direction, and production. 
  • STEP 5: Concept Testing 
    I conduct tests before proceeding to scene preparation. 
  • STEP 6: Budgeting and Quantity Preparation 
    I consider the script and shooting schedule, as well as the costs and materials needed for the props department. 
  • STEP 7: Filming 
    It’s the big day! 
  • STEP 8: Enjoy! 
    I watch the filmed scenes daily, or I wait for the broadcast or live tweet. 
    I look for fan-created works inspired by each episode. 


“After filming the pilot for Hannibal, Mads Mikkelsen was very disappointed that I served fake liver and fake lungs, he really wanted to taste them!” 

The winged ham arm: from sketch to final result 
Guillermo del Toro’s The Cabinet of Curiosities 
From the book Feeding Hannibal: A Connoisseur’s Cookbook: lamb ribs in prayer 
Hannibal: Italian boutique 

“The best compliment I’ve received on the set of Hannibal is: ‘It looks disgusting, can I taste it?'” 
Images: On the set of Hannibal: lacquered doctor 

“I always think about the convergence point of gazes on my culinary installations. I need to know where the light is going and how to draw the viewers’ attention to a particular point on the table. I learned to understand the organization of a film set and the placement of cameras at the beginning of my career in advertising agency; it allows me to not be impressed or confused when I work on a scene.” 

Images: Foundation: the tree of life and the three-legged roasted fawn 

“I have to adapt to the diets and dietary restrictions of the actors. Whether they are vegetarian, vegan, or have allergies, they must be able to eat what I prepare for them with confidence. That’s why, for example, I always include vegetables on the plates. Everything I present on the table is consumable, even if no one touches it.” 

Images: Steak for vegan / Rat and its edible organs / iPhones made of sugar 

“I always present sketches to the props department, who are the ones who hire me for shots, and to the director to showcase my dishes. They are ambiguous and open enough for everyone to bring complementary ideas and feel free to express themselves. I love this collaboration.” 

Images: Hamburger for In the Tall Grass by Vincenzo Natali / Hannibal: trout in blue and ouroboros / Guillermo del Toro’s The Cabinet of Curiosities / American Gods: Easter brunch. 

“Even though I obviously love cooking and shooting, my favourite moment is research. I spend astronomical amounts on books, I wander around stores and libraries. To do this job, you have to be very observant because inspiration is everywhere. Whenever an image inspires me, I store it in a corner of my memory so I can pull it out for the right project.” 

Images: Inspiration for Hannibal, Jan Davidszoon de Heem 


Language Creation 


bIjeghbe’chugh vaj blHegh. 
“Give yourself up or die!” 

bortaS bIr jablu’DI’ reH QaQqu’ nay’. 
“Revenge is a dish best served cold.” 

taH pagh taHbe’. DaH mu’tlheghvam vIqelnIS. 
“To be or not to be. That is the question.” 

Va vort a me, Dh’oine. N’aen te a dice’n.  
“Step away, human. I won’t tell you anything.” 

Va’esse deireádh aep eigean, va’esse eigh faidh’ar  
“Something ends, something begins.” 

Aen verelith cyrre naid. Ader eich blaen eide’me.  
“I give you my heart, but I must take your head.” 

Valar Morghulis. 
“All men must die.” 

Anha vaddrivak yera m’asikthtek khadokh! 
“I will kill you and spit on your corpse!” 


Game of Thrones, The Witcher, The 100, House of the Dragon, Into the Badlands, Another Life, Motherland: Fort Salem, Shadow and Bone, Penny Dreadful, Defiance… 


David and Jessie Peterson create languages for film and television. For each language, they structure the grammar, study the extent of the vocabulary, agreements, and variations. Like detectives, they then investigate the habits of the characters, their customs, and daily lives. Thanks to them, witches and other vampire families can express themselves! 

“To create a language, you must deeply explore the culture of the people who speak it.” 


Meeting with David and Jessie Peterson: 
Masterclass and signing on the Tripostal Main stage, Monday 18/03 at 2:30 PM. 


“We have a similar approach to creating languages as do costume designers, we ask ourselves the same questions. What does the characters’ environment look like? What’s the weather like where they are? What do they eat? How do they move around? We need to know what objects they need, where they are in their evolution, how they behave in society. In fantasy and science fiction, anything is allowed and comes from the author’s imagination, who has the answers to our questions.” 

LangTime Studio is a YouTube channel created by Jessie and David Peterson where they explain how to invent a language from A to Z. 

“To create Dothraki in Game of Thrones, I relied on the culture developed in George R.R. Martin’s books. Not only do we spend enough time with them to see how they live, but the author laid down language foundations through a few phrases and words included in the text. So, I spent a lot of time analyzing them and understanding how he imagined the grammar and structure. I also knew that Martin was inspired by the Mongols during the Silk Road era, which helped me develop Dothraki.” 

“To help actors master invented languages, we provide them, along with the script, with a phonetic version of the sentences and an audio file with the exact pronunciation. They also have the sentences broken down by syllables because it’s less intimidating to learn than a long line. Finally, we prepare a word-for-word translation of each dialogue so that they have a more detailed understanding of what they are saying.” 

“When working on a film, as we did for Dune or Bright, we abandon the language once filming is completed. It’s a story that ends. With TV series, not only may we have to return to it, but we never really know when the work will stop. The other difference is the very careful attention to the phrases that are heard. On Dune, for example, we were asked for very specific phrases for extras whose lines were almost impossible to hear. Conversely, for a recent TV series project, we were just asked to provide a few random phrases to create background noise, that was enough.” 

“Actors inevitably improve their pronunciation of the languages season after season, partly because they gain confidence. They get used to the rhythm of the words, to the musicality.” 

Image: At the linguists’ home. A music lover, David Peterson is well placed to understand the musicality of languages. 

Images: Pages from Irisa’s journal in Defiance, written in Irathient, a language created by David Peterson. 

“The work on the serial version of The Witcher was particularly strange because I had several different sources of information: the books, the first video game, and the third, The Wild Hunt, which has a large fan base. It was obvious that some of my decisions would disappoint some fans and delight others, and that I would never really be right.” 

“To do our job, the main quality to have is perseverance. You also need to be highly organized and aware that learning is never finished. All language creators improve over projects. Sometimes it’s hard to look back! Finally, I strongly advise jotting down every idea for words, sounds, typographies. Do not overestimate your memory.” 

Images: In the couple’s library: science fiction, fantasy, crime fiction, and many books and dictionaries dedicated to foreign languages. 

“The production of Vampire Academy liked the font we created so much that they had props made, including chairs with the names of the crew, in our font!” 

Images: Language and typography creation is also done by hand, the old-fashioned way, in notebooks. 

“Fans of series where invented languages are found, those who love science fiction for example, are the most fervent and passionate in the world! It puts a bit of pressure on us because we know they won’t let anything pass.” 

“It’s always nice to hear viewers take on our languages and quote phrases in their daily lives. It’s also a way for them to connect from a common cultural reference, from a work they followed at the same time, with the same love.” 

On Screen:
Do you speak Dothraki?  

Take up the challenge of the languages invented by David and Jessie Peterson for Game of Thrones and Motherland: Fort Salem


Script doctor 

The projects John Truby works on are confidential. 

How to fix a screenplay 
John Truby is a screenplay repairman. The script doctor is called in when a script is fragile or needs a little (or big) polish. 

“You don’t make a good series by spending millions of dollars. Nor by hiring a famous director from cinema. The key is the writing. It’s the authors who reign over the series, and that’s what makes the difference.” 

“A great series is a story with a serial structure, a constellation of characters, multiple opponents, and narrative arcs that intersect over several episodes and seasons.” 

What is a script doctor? 

It’s someone you can contact to rewrite an entire script or just revise the dialogue. But for me, my job is to fix the story. To make it stand up straight. So, I would say that I am more of a story consultant. I receive a script, I break it down by listing the scenes and every moment of the story. Then I study this list to see if the pace is good and I look for structural flaws to propose solutions that will energize the script. 

What narrative tools do you offer? 

Sometimes it’s about revising the order of scenes to strengthen the drama. It’s not enough to imagine plots, you also have to put them in the right place to control the tension. But be careful: my ideas are suggestions, I never tell authors what to do, I make recommendations that they may or may not choose to follow. 

What do you think of the quality of current series? 

I think we are at a point of stagnation after a great surge about ten years ago with series like Mad Men, Breaking Bad, Game of Thrones, Downton Abbey, Homeland, True Detective, The Good Wife, and Boardwalk Empire. They are among the best in the world. Since then, because series production has accelerated, we sometimes have showrunners who haven’t had time to gain experience and don’t reach that level of excellence. It turns out that the studios are slowing down the pace, and I hope that will impact the quality. 

Your training is increasingly aimed at series writers rather than film, how do you analyse that? 

For more than 20 years, serial writing has been more interesting than film writing. We have been fortunate in recent years to experience two great revolutions, the first being the resurgence of the feminine myth. Series led by new, strong, and complex female characters are increasingly numerous, and that’s good news. Then we saw TV series become a true art form in its own right. For me, this is due to the shift from episodic procedural writing to truly serial writing. 

What was your most interesting assignment? 

I worked on a Swedish soap that had been running for many years. Soaps all work the same way: you create conflicts between two protagonists and pass them from character to character until they exhaust themselves. When the authors contacted me, they were out of ideas and needed a fresh perspective. I analysed all the episodes already aired, about ten seasons, and I was able to propose new dynamics that they didn’t see because they lacked perspective. Sometimes you have to go back to the roots and analyse the past before you can start over. 

Do you have any advice for our visitors? 

I always say the same thing to aspiring screenwriters: write! Get together with other authors who have a project and analyse them together. Go through all genres, check the structures, question the interest of your initial plot, and your characters. It’s the best way to learn. 

John Truby’s take on Ted Lasso, the series that missed its turn. 

Ted Lasso is based on a very strong idea: a coach is recruited to train a football team even though he knows nothing about it, in order to sink the team, out of revenge from a woman on her ex-husband. As soon as the woman changes her mind and wants him to win, the series, for me, is over. Season 1 is excellent because it goes against the grain, with a benevolent hero who has no conflict. But from Season 2, it just becomes a big group therapy session. It’s important to stay true to your starting premise. 

John Truby’s take on Game of Thrones, a true model of success. 

I would have loved to be able to slip into the writers’ room of Game of Thrones, which I imagined was immense, like a football field, with kilometres of plots, characters, and narrative arcs. It must have been incredibly complex to keep track of all these stories to respect the starting point, which is in the title: the accession to the Iron Throne. This series is phenomenal, especially because it never lost sight of the promise it made. 


Underwater director of photography 

Wednesday, The Changeling, Yellowjackets, Bates Motel, Obi-Wan Kenobi, See, Once upon a time, Klondike, Eureka… 

How to film underwater 
Ian Seabrook is an underwater director of photography. He is responsible for lighting the shots, deciding their composition, and ensuring the safety of the actors in sometimes hostile environments. 

“You have to be obsessed with water to do this job!” 

Where does your passion for the underwater world come from? 
Well, I’m a Pisces! I’ve always lived near water, I grew up in Australia where I learned to dive before getting into underwater photography. I trained myself by practising, and then I bought a Nikonos, a Nikon underwater camera. 

How did you get into the film industry? 
I moved to Los Angeles and started with an unpaid internship. I reached out to underwater directors of photography to collaborate with them, but it’s a very limited community with a lot of competition. I worked as an underwater focus puller for a while, then I shot my first commercial in 1998. 

What are the major challenges of underwater shoots? 
I try to keep the crew as small as possible to avoid obstructing shots or disturbing the water. There must be one diver per talent in the water, so the team can quickly grow big, increasing the risk of someone ending up in the frame during a scene or creating bubbles or movements in the water. We also have to learn new ways to communicate with our team, using hand signals. Added to that is the cold and, sometimes, the fear of being in that environment. 

To keep a small crew, do you have to wear many hats? 
A good underwater director of photography does at least 11 jobs! We work on special effects, lighting, directing actors, technical aspects, safety. We also have to study the actors. I always spend rehearsals focusing on them and their relationship with the water rather than thinking about shot composition, which comes once everyone is comfortable. 

Do you undergo special training? 
I do breathing exercises every day, and a lot of exercise to stay in shape. I run, row, lift weights, and I dive as naturally as I breathe. For a long time, cameras were very heavy, it was like pushing a fridge underwater, all while controlling your breath and maintaining a movement rhythm similar to that on the surface. It requires discipline. 

Kodachrome 64, Channel Islands, California, 8 a.m. 
Julie Gautier for the Marriott Hotels advertising campaign 
Filming Wednesday with actor Oliver Watson. 


Animal trainers 

Stranger Things, Loki, Rectify, The First Lady, Sharp objects, Mr. Mercedes, Lovecraft Country… 

How do animals become actors? 
Carol and Greg Tresan teach animals to become actors. They care for them on set and ensure their well-being before, during, and after the shots. 

“To do this job, you need to be able to communicate with animals as well as with humans.” 

How did you become an animal trainer? 
[Greg Tresan] I’ve always loved animals, but originally, I wanted to work in the film industry through music. At 19, I had a dog that I adored and taught to play frisbee. After his death, my life changed. I trained my second dog, who became a frisbee champion to the point where we performed during halftime at NFL games! 

What was the turning point that made you merge your passion for animals and for cinema? 
[Greg Tresan] My dog and I were recruited to shoot a commercial, and then another… everyone asked me how I trained him. I was unable to answer that question, so I underwent training as a animal trainer – followed by my wife, Carol – and I opened our agency in Atlanta. 

Images: Greg Tresan and his dog, two frisbee champions. 

How do you ensure the well-being of the animals? 
It’s our top priority. We collaborate with the American Humane Association, and our contracts specify that productions we work with must declare the animals. With each script we receive, we anticipate everything: is it dangerous? Where do they sleep? What does the scene require exactly? Whether it’s an elephant, a dog, or a cricket, we pay the same attention. 

What are the biggest challenges? 
It’s very difficult to work with insects. You have to be careful not to lose them or squash them. When we bring ants to a set, we count them before leaving to make sure they’re all there. Horses are also very delicate. Their lower limbs are their whole life. When they have to be ridden, I always make sure the actors know how to ride, and if they don’t, I teach them. 

How do you manage the fear that actors may have of certain animals? 
It happens often, and it can be any animal. For an actress who didn’t want to touch a mouse, we used a hand double. If a dog has to aggressively bark at a character, we film the scene without the actor, using off-screen techniques. 


Do you know who has a crocodile or a turtle as a pet? 
(Bonus point if you know the name of the creature.) 



Call My Agent!, A French Village, The Bonfire of Destiny, Women at war, The Red Band Society, IQ, A Beautiful Story… 

“The unconscious is a silent force that, like a camera, frames every action. Silence, camera, action!” 

How to analyse the psyche of characters 
As a “psynarist”, a blend of psychologist and screenwriter, Violaine Bellet is the guardian of the characters’ psychological journey. She knows every secret and contour of their personalities. 

What is your professional background? 
I completed a triple degree in philosophy, audiovisual studies, and Modern Literature in Montpellier and Reims while practicing dance and mime. Later, I joined La Fémis in Paris to study screenwriting. At that time, I felt there was a missing component essential for character characterization: psychology. A Brazilian director and psychoanalyst hired me as a screenwriter and allowed me to immerse myself in the stories of her patients by setting up my office in her practice. This experience opened a window to human suffering, life journeys, destinies, and how the subconscious guides them, much like the subtext of a series scene drives its true meaning. 

How did you train for this peculiar profession? 
I have a passion for Asian and American films where emotions are conveyed more through aesthetics, situations, or silences than through dialogue. Deciphering the language of the unconscious seemed essential to me to practice the grammar of filmmaking. I attended training sessions to identify the most useful approaches to character characterization: hypnosis, NLP (neuro-linguistic programming), psycho-genealogy, psychotherapy, coaching, kinesiology, family therapy, and then somato-sex analysis, which fascinated me. 

What qualities are necessary to be a good psynarist? 
You need to be a bit of a psychologist and a screenwriter. A bit of a psychologist because authors usually address subjects that trouble them, sometimes unconsciously. The characters they struggle with often embody their own issues. Therefore, you must be delicate and ask them questions so that the answers come from the writers themselves without pressuring them. Additionally, you need to have a vast array of psychological tools to adapt to different projects, authors, and work methods. 

How do you use these tools? 
If I intervene early in the show’s bible, I draw from NLP to extract the theme, values, and arena. If I intervene in arcs, treatments, or already dialogued scripts, I virtually lay out the characters on the couch to understand their unconscious mechanisms. I might ask an author to put themselves in the character’s shoes and speak spontaneously: what is their unspoken fantasy, their greatest dream, their biggest fear? It’s a bit like role-playing. 

On which TV series did you start? 
Over 15 years, I’ve worked on many different series. I initially aimed for cinema, but Frédéric Krivine called me for the third season of Un Village français to redefine the characterization of each character and the unconscious relational stakes that bind them. We wrote a new bible focused on psychology. This experience inspired me to continue with TV shows because it was fascinating! That’s where I met Fanny Herrero on Call My Agent! and Marie Roussin on The Red Band Society, while also teaching character design in animation and working with production companies that wanted to emphasize character psychology to unlock dramaturgical problems. 

Is it difficult to switch from one project to another? 
I often say that I’m an emergency psynarist! I must be quickly available and responsive because I’m often called in case of a character or story blockage, with the risk that a version may be rejected by a broadcaster. I’ve also learned to keep the right distance because I have to deeply engage in the intimacy of projects while accepting that I may not hear from them again once they’re back on track, at least until the screening. In this sense, I think it’s quite similar to the role of a midwife who accompanies a pregnancy, childbirth, and breastfeeding before the mother-baby duo disappears forever. 

Steps for analysing a new project: 

  • 1. Assessment and diagnosis of the project from the perspective of the characters. 
  • 2. Measurement of the intensity of conflicts faced by the characters: is it high enough? 
  • 3. Analysis of the characters’ objectives: are they clear enough? 
  • 4. Analysis of the characters’ objectives in relation to each other: are they distinct enough? If not, two characters can be merged or their objectives can be completely differentiated. 
  • 5. Analysis of obstacles, whether internal or external, facing the objectives. 
  • 6. Analysis of the antagonist, whose objective must be clearly understood. The antagonist should not only create obstacles but should also be a fully developed character in their own right. 
  • 7. Assessment of the power of the antagonist: is it strong enough to be a threat that generates suspense and solid cliffhangers? 
  • 8. Analysis of the complexity of the characters to ensure they remain interesting and evolve over multiple seasons. 

Mapping Emotions 

Each character in a series evolves through a constellation of emotions and contradictory characteristics that make their personality deeper. Follow the thread! 

Violaine Bellet’s Iconic Characters 
Jean Holloway, the psychologist from Gypsy 
She spies on her patients to better help them but falls into fascination with the girlfriend of one of them with whom she starts a relationship. This is called a “counter-transference,” unconsciously activated in the therapist based on their own traumas. They can then experience disgust, desire, fear, anger, and all the work for them consists of being aware of it to resolve it internally or with a supervisor. A more modern school assumes that this can be useful in therapy because denying it would be a form of neurotic denial. Some therapists prefer to work with it and discuss it with their patients. This series masterfully tackles the subject with this psychologist who acts on her impulses and reveals herself to be perverse, a quality required in a therapist: manipulating the other for their own good, but still manipulating them nonetheless. 

Eleven in Stranger Things 
Eleven is extremely well-characterized. Her problem is clear and unsolvable, with a life-or-death urgency to resolve it. Everything she does requires tough choices, sacrifices, and extraordinary courage, facing obstacles beyond her strength, so much so that she fails enough for us to remain empathetic with her throughout. This is exactly what we want to see in a character, especially when they are at the heart of the story. 


Intimacy coordinator 

Power Book II: Ghost, Power Book III: Raising Kanan, Fleishman Is in Trouble, Dickinson… 

How to protect actors 
As an intimacy coordinator, Nicole Callender ensures the comfort and protection of actors in scenes involving intimacy or nudity. She ensures their consent, choreographs their movements, and acts as a liaison with the production. 

“I’m here to remind actors that their bodies belong to them. They’re often told it’s a tool.” 

What’s your professional background? 
I earned a degree in psychology at my parents’ suggestion, with a focus on theatre. I was so passionate about it that I ended up concentrating on theatre, performing on many regional stages, where I discovered my love for fight scenes. After learning to choreograph them, I became a stuntwoman. There are few black women in my field, and because I’m petite, I can also double for children. It took me 7 years to establish myself in the industry. 

When did you start intimacy coordination? 
Four years ago. It’s a profession that was really starting to develop, and for me, it made sense given my background, my relationship with the body, and psychology. When a colleague who was an intimacy coordinator for HBO needed someone to fill in for her on assignments, I decided to take the plunge, learn, and observe her on sets, including that of The Deuce, before obtaining my certification. 

What is your exact role? 
I intervene in various situations that aren’t necessarily related to sex or nudity scenes. For example, I might be called for a childbirth scene, in addition to the specialized consultant. I handle intimate moments within the family, such as parents holding a child, ensuring the actress’s comfort. I can also be present for a bathing scene or physical contact between two people, like a kiss or a caress. 

How do you prepare actors for sex scenes? 
It all starts with individual discussions with the actors. I need to know if they’re comfortable, if they consent to what the script requires, if they have any questions. I inquire about their boundaries, which can vary greatly. Some can’t stand being touched on the shoulder or elbow or held in a certain way. It goes far beyond attitudes toward genitalia or nudity. We also use shields and intimate protections. 

Do you provide support after filming? 
My goal is for actors not to go home with their character and that scene on their mind. I’m also here to provide some closure, so that the end of filming is really over. I always ask them if they want to talk about the day, if they’re comfortable with what they experienced, if they’re anxious. That’s also part of my mission. 


Movement director 

The Crown, Feud, Wolf, Nolly, The Great, Killing Eve, History of a pleasure seeker… 

How to make a body move 
Polly Bennett is a body observer. She understands their movements, rhythm, and nuances. On set, she is called upon to enhance the authenticity of characters, ensuring that gestures and gazes are natural and believable. She decodes behaviour. 

Video interview: Polly Bennett recounts three acting performances. 

“All our movements have a direction and a point of origin. I try to identify those of the characters to assist actors in their interpretation.” 

What is your professional background? 
I aimed to become a dancer, but I was always criticized for being too “entertaining.” When I joined the Royal Ballet in London, I felt people were too serious, and it wasn’t for me. At 15, I started theatre, quickly becoming an advisor on choreography and body movement for the director. Then I studied art history before working on fashion shows and musicals as a choreographer. I later became a production assistant and joined the Royal Shakespeare Company as a movement choreographer before going freelance. 

How do you work with actors? 
It’s important to remember that each person is different, and our bodies carry traces of our experiences and who we interact with. We’re haunted by memories and experiences. So, I have to imagine a toolbox for each individual, tailored to who they are. When I assisted Emma Corrin and Elizabeth Debicki in portraying Lady Diana in The Crown, there were similarities in their rhythms or how they navigated space because they were stepping into the shoes of someone who existed, but they also had their own movements. 

Can you give us a concrete example of advice you gave to an actress? 
When Imelda Staunton played the Queen, I told her to always push her feet deep into the ground, whether she was sitting or standing. It completely changed her posture. When your toes grip the ground, you engage your ankles, legs, hips, and spine. The Queen was a woman who always moved confidently because she never doubted her place. There was always someone to guide her, and everywhere, everyone knew her. She was comfortable and grounded because she was expected and directed. Some think Imelda Staunton didn’t have much to act, that it was an easy role, but it’s quite the opposite. Her body always had to be ready to move forward, with energy and enthusiasm. 

How would you define your role? 
Every day, we’re told how to be. Stand up straight. Be confident. Be lighter. Hide your hips. Hide your breasts. We’re asked to be pretty things on display but not alive. It’s like denying who we are and the weight of our bodies. I encourage people to become aware of their physicality and to use it. 

Is your profession recognized for its true value? 
Not yet. We’re never rewarded. There are no awards for us, no royalties, no profit-sharing. Right now, with choreographer Ellen Kane, we’re building a network of colleagues to try to obtain the recognition and status we deserve. Producers still struggle to understand what a movement choreography is, how it’s different from pure dance, and what we can bring to their actors. I know the road is long, but it’s essential. 



Modern family, Vampire Diaries, Atypical, Switched at birth, The company you keep, Splitting up together, Life in pieces, The Mindy project, Don’t trust the B**** in apt 23… 

“I think that when music and dance are added to an emotional scene, they transcend it.” 

How do you get the stars to dance? 
Mimi Karsh’s mission is multi-faceted: she designs custom choreographies for scenes dreamed up by the writers and teach them to actors and actresses who don’t practice dance, all in record time! 

Watch the video interview: three dance scenes deciphered by Mimi Karsh. 

What is your background? 
I took theatre and dance classes knowing that I would pursue an artistic career. I had the opportunity to assist the choreographer Mary Ann Kellog, who became my mentor on Mad Men and Two and a Half Men before getting my chance as the lead choreographer on Don’t Trust the B—- in Apartment 23

What are the challenges of your job? 
When working on TV shows, we’re always pressed for time, and rehearsals are often reduced to a minimum. Rare are the series like Modern Family where I had a whole day with the cast and a dedicated training space. When possible, I rehearse the scene with doubles to present it to the team and propose adjustments when necessary. 

What’s your secret to making actors comfortable with dance? 
I know that dance is there to serve the script and that it’s the scene that counts, not the perfection of the movements. Actors know how to convey emotions. I try to adapt to their physicality, their attitude. That’s how characters are credible: by keeping their little flaws. My greatest joy is when they let go and enjoy dancing! 

What are the steps to creating a dance scene? 
After reading the script, I discuss with the writers, producers, and directors to understand the intentions of the scene. I also need to know the duration of the scene during shooting and editing, and whether the actors are novices in dance. When they are, they usually want to rehearse longer. Because I was an actress, I know how to navigate the space on a set and adapt to camera placements, which is very useful. 

Do you have any advice for aspiring choreographers? 
Being an assistant on shoots seems essential to me; I did it for three years, and it taught me a lot. I believe you can improve until the end of your career, so I continue to take classes. Finally, you must be truly passionate and eager to build something as a team. 


The dance floor and mirror are yours to replicate the dance steps choreographed by Mimi Karsh. 


From which series are these dance scenes taken? 



Westworld, Hightown, Them, The Affair, The O.A., The First, Atlanta, Roadies… 

How to make objects talk 
Tara Blume is obsessed with sound. From using celery branches to create the sound of bones breaking to finding the perfect amount of water to put in a bottle for the perfect sound, she can hear objects before even touching them. 

“My favourite sound? Anything made with metal!” 

Images: Foley essentials 

What is your professional background? 
It was at the Berkeley College of Music in Boston where I was studying singing and production engineering, when I discovered foley sound effects. It was love at first sight! I moved to California and knocked on the doors of all the studios, presenting myself as a foley artist. After six months of odd jobs and over fifty meetings, I found a job by lying about my experience. Turns out, I’m naturally gifted at this job, it’s very instinctive for me, so I got away with it. My first real job was on The Guitar, Amy Redford’s first film, Robert Redford’s daughter. 

What information do you have to create foley sounds for a series? 
Before I start my part of the work, a preparer sorts through the scenes and lists the needs. They create a sort of map of the episode with categories of sound to produce. In a document, they summarize very precisely: “between such and such time code, a woman walks with high heels on linoleum.” The first step, once we have this document, is to create foley for all fabric effects: clothes, sheets, curtains… 

Foley is a very physical job, where you move a lot! 
I call it “sound choreography”. I’ve done a lot of dancing and it’s very useful for the energy and movement required for certain actions. When we do footsteps, for example, we pay attention to the condition of the surface the character is walking on. If there are holes, bumps, we have to hear them. Footsteps are the second step after fabric sounds. 

How do you organize your studio? 
We have to proceed in groups of objects, to have room to move despite the considerable number of accessories, big or small, that we accumulate. With my partner, we do all the chairs, sofas, and beds sounds, then we take everything out of the studio. Then we do all the kitchen noises, plates, glasses, pots, and so on until we’ve covered the entire work. 

Image: Tara Blume and her partner, Ryan Maguire. 

Do you also create sounds made by the characters? 
Yes! Spitting, vomiting, sipping water, sometimes choking. It’s difficult for actors to emphasize these sounds enough for them to be picked up by the microphones on set. We also intervene in meal scenes or when characters chew gum. 

Have you ever had to make props to get a specific sound? 
Yes, often! For example, on Westworld, I was creating foley sound effects for a samurai who wore a sort of skirt made of leather strips. I didn’t have anything convincing on hand so I bought handbags at a thrift store, cut them up, and connected them with fishing line. It worked wonderfully! 

Images: Watermelons are often used to simulate smashed heads. 

It’s your turn to create sound effects! 
Sound designers are full of imagination to bring all the details of a scene to life for our ears. Try to reproduce the sound effects from the series on screen! 

Scenes to create sound effects for 

  • Time, S01E01, BBC One (2021 – …) 
    Sound of Keys: Shake a set of keys vigorously and rub them together to mimic the sound of Eric McNally walking down the prison corridor with his keychain. 
    Trick: Vary the speed and intensity of shaking to match the pace of the scene. 
  • Succession, S01E01, HBO (2018 – 2023) 
    Sound of Paper: Crumple, tear, and shuffle paper to recreate Kendall Roy’s explosive anger in the bathroom. 
    Trick: Experiment with various crumpling techniques to achieve the desired sound texture. 
  • Yellowstone, S02E10, Paramount (2018 – …) 
    Sound of Dry Grass: Grasp, flatten, and rustle dried grass to imitate Rip Wheeler feeding the horses. 
    Trick: Use your hands to manipulate the grass and create a variety of rustling sounds. 
  • Sex Education, S04E03, Netflix (2019 – 2023) 
    Sound of Kissing: Kiss your hands or forearm with varying intensity to replicate Eric and Adedayo’s passionate kiss. 
    Trick: Adjust the pressure and speed of your kisses to match the intimacy of the scene. 
  • Better Call Saul, S05E08, AMC (2015 – 2022) 
    Sound of Zipper: Gently slide a zipper up and down to synchronize with the Salamanca twins opening their money bags. 
    Trick: Pay attention to timing and match the sound of the zipper with the characters’ actions on screen. 
  • Scenes from a Marriage S01E03, HBO (2021) 
    Sound of Clothing: Manipulate fabric, roll it into a ball, and softly pat it against your palm to simulate Jonathan folding Mira’s clothes. 
    Trick: Experiment with moves to achieve the desired sound of clothes being handled. 


Vocal coach  

Silo, Small axe, The power, The baby, Mood, The trial of Christine Keeler, Noughts + Crosses, War of the worlds, Poldark, Black Mirror… 

How to work on your diction 
Hazel Holder trains actors and actresses in accents and intonations. She helps them place their voices, breathe, articulate, and embody their characters, whether real or fictional, with the utmost accuracy. 

“There are no shortcuts in learning an accent or dialect; you have to practice every day.” 

What is your professional background? 
I didn’t originally intend to pursue this career. I attended a business school where I had to implement a project, which turned out to be the creation of a theatre company. People around me asked why I didn’t make it my profession, and I listened to them! I took classes, did theatre, and roles on television. Then, while working at the National Theatre in London, someone told me I would make a good vocal coach. 

What was your reaction? 
I was scared because all the vocal coaches I knew were white women from the middle class who spoke in a certain way, and I was a black woman from the working class. I had no savings, and my parents couldn’t help me, but I decided to go back to school and pursue it. It was the best decision I ever made in my life. 

How do you work with actors and actresses? 
When I start a project, I talk to the production team and then with the talents. If they are portraying a real person, I search for audio clips to analyse. If it’s a fictional character, I discuss with them how they envision it, and then I provide them with videos, documentaries, or other materials that may be relevant. I provide a lot of audio clips, some of which I record myself, so they can familiarize themselves with them. 

Small Axe talks a lot about music and musicality; how does music influence your work? 
I’m also a singer, and I’ve noticed that it helps me understand accents and breathing. It’s an excellent tool for talents. For the episode “Mangrove” in Small Axe, an actress had to learn a fairly complex speech with a Trinidadian accent. I made her listen to calypso music so she could tap the rhythm on my shoulder, immerse herself in it, and incorporate it into the beginning of her speech. It worked very well, but unfortunately, the scene was cut from the final edit. 

What qualities are necessary to be a good vocal coach? 
Beyond what we learn in class, you need to have good listening skills. Not only do you have to listen and integrate voices and accents, but you also need to listen to your collaborators. So, you must listen with your ears and your heart and show empathy. Even the most experienced actors can be afraid on set, and we’re there to help them. I usually recommend breathing exercises, especially humming. 

Hazel Holder’s concentration mandala. 
Working readings on accents, language, and breathing. 

Scream artist 

The projects on which Ashley Peldon dubs screams are confidential. 

“Through our screams, we can convey a wide range of emotions from rage to fear, from power to despair.” 

How do you produce the best scream? 
Ashley Peldon is paid to scream for hours into a microphone. She enhances the screams of actresses in moments of terror, when she’s not dubbing animals or strange creatures. 

How do you go back to your normal state after a screaming session? 
When I’m in the studio, I know when it’s time to let everything out and when I can return to being myself. It’s very easy when we’re in post-production and not on set; the environment helps us separate things. However, when I scream, I really act. Emotions come through my voice but also through expressions on my face, gestures, and breath. There’s a warm-up, a working phase, and finally a break. I manage all three a bit like athletes, compartmentalizing. Besides, I need to save my energy in case there are multiple takes. 

Where in the body do screams come from? 
It depends on the emotion to convey and the volume of the scream. When I need to express effort, like in a fight scene or an attack, I have to contract my abdominal muscles and tense up. For screams of terror, which work like bursts, it’s more relaxed. Then there’s the classic horror movie scream, very high-pitched, which comes from the head. When I dub actresses, I also need to be close to their pitch. This kind of process is necessary when there’s too much noise during filming due to sound effects like explosions or gunfire, for example. 

How do you protect your voice? 
I may not be serious enough about my voice; I should be more careful. I obviously drink honey tea, take lozenges, and use a humidifier, if necessary, but that’s all. I’m fortunate to have good genes. I’ve always had a lot of voice; I don’t need to make much effort. I know that the teams I collaborate with try to save my voice by asking for as few takes as possible. 

How do your acquaintances react when they discover your profession? 
Generally, I will first talk about my dubbing work. If I sense they’re interested, I delve into the details, explaining that I have a somewhat unique specialty, and then the conversation gets lively! I think few people realize the amount of work and detail that goes into a film, series, or animation, especially regarding sound. 


In October 2000, English teaching assistant Jill Drake set the record for the loudest scream, reaching 129 decibels – certified by the Guinness Book of World Records. Will you beat her? 
Step into the booth and let out a good scream, it feels good (and it’s soundproof)! 

Try to become the loudest screamer at Séries Mania! 
Each day, the person with the highest volume on the dB meter wins a Séries Mania tote bag, and the overall winner over the six days will receive 2 tickets to attend the festival’s Closing Ceremony on Friday, March 22nd. 

Competition period: from Saturday, 16/03 to Thursday, 21/03, from 6 pm to 7 pm 
How to participate: Approach the on-site outreach person who will record your score. 

Free game. This competition requires providing your contact details to the outreach team. Only the winners will be contacted. All data will be deleted on March 23rd and will not be used for any other purpose than the competition mentioned above. 


“I find that, as adults, we don’t scream enough anymore! I’m not talking about screams of fear that I wouldn’t wish upon anyone, but about expressing joy like we did as children, letting our emotions out in a burst of a scream.” 


Prosthetic Crafting 

Behind this curtain, you will see human chests, hearts, legs, and burns. EVERYTHING IS FAKE. It’s all just for the show. But it’s so well done that it looks very, very real. Sensitive souls, refrain. Others: you will love it! 

Established in 2002 by Frédéric Lainé and Guillaume Castagné, later joined by Olivier Afonso, Nicolas Herlin, Laetitia Hillion, and Mélanie Gerbeaux, CLSFX / Atelier 69 brings together all the expertise in makeup and special effects. Among their many skills, they excel in creating and transforming human bodies, as seen in Hippocrate, the TV series by Thomas Lilti. Burns, wounds, open fractures—they can do it all! 

“Our work is 95% in the workshop and 5% on set.” 


Step into the marked skin of an actor or actress in medical series. 
Wound application and injury makeup by Acte Académie, on this Plateau 05. 
Every day, from 2 PM to 6 PM. 

Séries Mania thanks the University Hospital of Lille for providing the medical equipment. 


“There are many professions in our workshop: sculptor, moulder, painter, hair puncher, and animatronics technician. More recently, we have created a 3D department for modelling and printing.” 

Images: Overview of the various professions at CLSFX / Atelier 69. 

If you’re not too sensitive, flip through the document holder where you’ll see more photos of the impressive workshop work. And for realism enthusiasts, objects made by CLSFX / Atelier 69 are hidden behind the screens! 

“For special effects makeup, we advise attending an applied arts school because there are many career opportunities. If, after a few years, you change your mind, you can still become a prop master, work in set design, do scenic painting, or casting. These studies allow you to dabble in everything.” 

  • A chest for surgery 

“For this bust, we chose to make a large prosthesis with the arm raised. From the beginning, we warned the creator and director, Thomas Lilti, that the actor would not be able to make all the movements he wanted because silicone warps. We adapted to the most logical position for the exsufflation that takes place in the scene.” 
More information on screen. 
Images: Creation of an exact replica of a chest. 
Look around you: the final bust is hidden behind the screens. 

  • Heartbeat 

“To make our first heart, we went to Rungis market at 5 in the morning. We found a pig’s heart that we moulded. For this type of project, we also have many anatomy books in the workshop. It’s important to be anatomically accurate, but in reality, viewers won’t question it. We also work with a forensic pathologist who consults for cinema and provides us with documentation.” 
Look around you: the heart is hidden behind the screens, and you can even make it beat! 

  • Hidden Images: 

Attention, this content may be shocking 
Fractures, burns, amputations… 
Lift to discover the prostheses created by CLSFX / Atelier 69… if you dare! 
P.2: Steps for creating an open fracture. 
P.4: Steps for creating a burn. 
P.6: Steps for creating an amputated leg 
Look around you: the leg is hidden behind the screens! 


Contact lens technician  

Dahmer, Atlanta, Obi-Wan Kenobi, American Horror Story, Kaleidoscope… 

How are eyes made? 
Jessica Nelson has the most precise job in the world: she hand-paints contact lenses to enhance the gaze of characters in TV series. 

“I find it romantic to work on the gaze, on how people see the world and themselves.” 

What is your professional background? 
I started in music, with the bands Insane Clown Posse and Twisted, whose members wore contact lenses. This detail immediately caught my attention! Then I ventured into special effects makeup before collaborating with optometrists specialized in the film industry. I would go on set to help talents with custom-fitted lenses. 

What do contact lenses bring to actors and actresses? 
It helps them get into character. I am currently working on a horror project for which I created deep red lenses for the main character, a murderer. When the actor wears them, his vision turns black and white! He instantly becomes someone else. 

What information do you need to create lenses? 
The more I know about the character and how they will be filmed, especially the lighting, the better I work. For Atlanta, for example, I knew that Teddy Perkins’ (episode 2.06) face would be in shadow and that it would affect his iris. For Dahmer, I knew I had to use a technology available in the 1980s, for a killer. 

How do you handle talents’ phobia of wearing lenses? 
You have to reassure them. This can involve breathing exercises or clearing everyone out of the dressing room to create a safe space. For each pair of lenses I create, the person must undergo tests and see a doctor beforehand to avoid allergy problems. I always explain the symptoms to watch out for, such as dry eyes, itching, or blurry vision. 

What qualities are necessary for your job? 
Being curious about nature seems essential to me. There are so many organic elements similar to those of our anatomy or animals that we can draw inspiration from. You also need to be very patient. It’s a meticulous work where every detail counts: room temperature, the water you use, the number of brush strokes. 

The creation I am most proud of is the promotional poster for season 7 of American Horror Story. Makeup artist Cristina Waltz wanted “bee” eyes with honeycomb patterns. It’s difficult to paint by hand because to get a true black, you have to go over green about twenty times. Even with the steadiest hand, there’s a risk of messing up. I had many sleepless nights and tests for drying time. It looks like a digital creation, but when you look closely, you can see the brushstrokes, it’s very organic. 

Images: Lens proposals for American Horror Story
Images: Lens research for Obi-Wan Kenobi 


Jessica Nelson’s working documents 

  • 1. Caring for hand painted contact lenses  
  • 2. Contact lens fitting verification record  

Contact Lenses 

  • Dahmer (Netflix) 
    Dahmer’s lenses are inspired by the eyes of Emperor Palpatine from Star Wars
  • Atlanta (FX)  
    The dark lenses enhance the strangeness of Teddy Perkins’ face, inspired by Michael Jackson and James Brown. 
  • I am the night (TNT) 
    The hand-painted lens worn by Chris Pine is injected with blood. 
  • American Horror Story (FX) 
    The design of the lenses created for the American Horror Story poster is inspired by honeycomb structure. 


Dental SFX technician  

Doctor Who: Flux, Interview with the vampire, Lampje, Wednesday, The man who fell to earth, Queens of Mystery, Foundation, Vikings… 

How are teeth made? 
Dominic Mombrun is a dental technician. He adorns the mouths of vampires, monsters of all kinds, but also simple characters who just need a little change of look. 

“I don’t want my dental prostheses to steal the spotlight; they must blend into the character.” 

What is your professional background? 
I wanted to be a meteorologist, but facing the number of years of study required, I switched to sales. I worked for luxury brands for about ten years without being very happy, then I resumed my studies to work in my father-in-law’s dental practice, and I loved this craftsmanship! 

How did you get into the film industry? 
I’ve always loved cinema and monsters. One day, at a fan convention, a makeup artist explained to me that my expertise was in demand in the industry. It was a revelation, and I started in 2017. I work closely with a dental technician in Los Angeles, Gary Archer. 

What are the steps to make a prosthesis? 
It starts with a call from a makeup artist or a production. For big projects like Marvel, an entire team of concept artists prepares visuals of what they want. For others, it’s up to me to make proposals. I sketch by hand or on my tablet using CAD-CAM software. Once I get approval, it takes me two weeks to manufacture. 

What questions do you ask about the character before imagining their teeth? 
Our teeth say everything about us. I need to know if they’re stressed, if they smoke, if they sleep well, if they have good dental hygiene, if they’ve had any trauma. If it’s a monster, how does it feed itself? Is it carnivorous? Does it tear its prey’s flesh? In that case, it will have sharp fangs, but if it’s herbivorous, it will have flatter but very strong teeth. 

How is the manufacturing process? 
First, we need to get an impression or a scan of the talent’s mouth, then create a 3D model and a plaster mould. I then sculpt the teeth in wax, and once my matrix is finalized, I cast it with acrylic. Once the prosthesis is ready, I do fittings with the talent to ensure that everything is comfortable and practical for them. 


Dental prosthesis for Doctor Who: Flux. The prosthesis was later coloured in gold. 
Dental prosthesis for Gomez Addams in Wednesday. Dominic Mombrun had to reverse the natural structure of actor Luis Guzman’s jaw, whose lower teeth pass in front of the upper teeth. 
Dental prosthesis for a vampire. 
Dental prosthesis for a werewolf made in collaboration with American dental prosthetist Gary Archer. 
Dental prosthesis projects. 
Dental prostheses on elegant models. 


Special Effects Creation 


Marianne, Furies, La Révolution, Fumer fait tousser, Mandibules, Le Règne animal… 

How to Create a Monster 
CLSFX / Atelier 69 deeply loves monsters and other creatures. The team composed of Frédéric Lainé, Guillaume Castagné, Olivier Afonso, Nicolas Herlin, Laetitia Hillion, and Mélanie Gerbeaux was awarded the César & Techniques trophy in 2021 for their overall work. Their workshop fulfils all the strangest requests, from creating a decaying head to a talking rat, from dripping organs to creepy insects. 

“When we look at photos that may seem gruesome to some people, we see the aesthetic side of bloodstains, shapes, and colours. We have a completely different eye.” 


“We must be as realistic as possible while also seeking effects that are suitable for the camera. It’s a kind of audiovisual realism.” 

“To work in special effects makeup, you must first and foremost enjoy teamwork. You also need to be willing to constantly question yourself and not be afraid of criticism because everyone gives their opinion on projects. This allows for even more creativity. You absolutely must be passionate because we spend hours at our workstations. And in the beginning, you have to persevere. Today, we master the steps of our work, but in the early days, we experimented a lot, we made and undo, we made mistakes. That’s normal. Finally, you have to be interested in new technologies; it becomes essential.” 

On the shelves: 
Objects and castings from the workshop 
Human head model (Family Business, Netflix [2019 – 2021]) 
“When an actor discovers a replica of their head, they usually laugh and take a selfie with it!” 

From Human to Clicker 
Wednesday 20/03, all day 
Makeup and prosthetic application demonstration by Acte Académie: creating a Clicker from The Last of Us

BOX 1 

Open but don’t touch! 
Warning: This content may be shocking 

He lost his head 
Model of a human head 
Furies, Netflix (2024) 

Pain in the foot 
Model of a severed foot 

Creating a head: 
User manual from Atelier 69 

  • 1- Scan or take an impression of the actor wearing a latex cap. 
  • 2- Make a silicone mould and fill it with modelling clay to obtain a cast. 
  • 3- Remove the modelling clay head from the mould to make sculpture adjustments. It is necessary to hollow out the nostrils and sculpt the open eyelids with the eyes inside, as the actor is moulded with closed eyes. 
  • 4- Make a new casting in translucent silicone flesh tone. 
  • 5- Airbrush paint all skin details. 
  • 6- Apply eyelashes and eyebrows one by one with a needle. 
  • 7- Attach a wig and hand-insert the last centimetre of hair. 
  • 8- Insert acrylic eyes, either made in-house or purchased. 

BOX 2 

Open but don’t touch! 
Warning: This content may be shocking 

Bad Tripe 
Anatomical model of a rat 
La Révolution, Netflix (2020)  

“To make this rat, Guillaume Castagne collected small chicken intestines from the butcher next to the workshop, from which he made imprints and then moulded them flat. It’s always a bit complicated to create organic stuff because everything is very organized in the body, there are smooth areas, others rougher. We also pay attention to the aesthetic aspect, adding a small thread that will give a skin movement.” 
CLSFX / Atelier 69 

BOX 3 

Open but don’t touch! 
Warning: This content may be shocking 

Thumbs up 
Thumb prosthesis and its mould 


In the flesh 
Here are silicone strips, with different thicknesses depending on the projects, prepared by CLSFX / Atelier 69. It is with this soft and malleable material that the prostheses presented in the exhibition (and in TV shows) are made. 
Exceptionally: you can touch! 

Spare parts 
Elements of the puppets seen in Gen V belonging to Colin Penman. 



Gen V, American Gods, Wayne, Star Trek: Discovery, The Strain, 22.11.63, Defiance… 

How to make a puppet 

Colin Penman is as skilled at beautifying actors with glamorous makeup as he is at crafting creatures and puppets. Passionate and versatile, his career has oscillated between children’s programs and horror series, always with a great passion for organic effects despite the rise of digital technology. 

“A good puppeteer must be able to convey emotions by manipulating an object as simple as an apple. The way he tilts or turns it must express something.” 

“I’ve been in this industry for 35 years. I started in special effects makeup, making creatures. Then I moved into beauty makeup, fashion, and film. I also had the opportunity to work on a children’s program with puppets, and I was able to learn the craft. Before that, I had also done mime and clowning, which is very useful for puppet manipulation!” 

“When we made this giant ear for Gen V, we paid attention to every detail, including skin colour and glossiness. We tested it several times with different liquids because it was going to be filled with 3700 liters of fake blood! The Gen V production could have chosen to create this ear digitally, but they opted for an organic element, and it makes all the difference.” 

Images: This ear measures 4.5 meters long. 

“In total, we made 15 puppets for Gen V: Sam, Emma, and the guards, which were in duplicate to ensure safety as they were going to be completely destroyed. For each one, we created elements that could be removed from the bodies, such as a brain or wool intestines. The scene was entirely shot in one day!” 

Images: Puppets of the Gen V guards before being beaten up. 

“When filming a scene with puppets, the floor is raised so that puppeteers can stand underneath with their arms raised. They need to be able to move around; it’s a very physical job. They have access to monitors to see their movements, while the cameras are placed overhead.” 

“We can do a lot with CGI, but there’s something tangible, organic when effects are crafted. It’s more comfortable for actors who don’t necessarily like performing in front of a green or blue screen. We give them the opportunity to interact with their environment, which helps them a lot.” 

Images: Puppets at rest but still expressive. 

“To do my job, you have to be very observant. I watch people on the street, on public transport, to capture something about them. I pay attention to their reactions, their gait, their appearance, even their hair, their facial hair. I create a kind of mental library of images and information. You also have to be very patient because we have very long days. I always advise my team to take care of themselves, physically and mentally, to keep going.” 

“I quickly learned to surround myself with people who had the same passions and ethics as me. This is very important in our industry, which can be tough. When you meet someone who matches you, you have to hold on to them. The best ideas come from collaboration, and I’ve been fortunate to have assembled a fantastic team around me for years. The secret to longevity in an industry that demands a lot is to never stop having fun and enjoying yourself.” 

Images: Colin Penman and some guts. 

Monster Hunt 

Which shows do these charming creatures come from?” 


Careers in series  

Series often tell their own behind-the-scenes stories! From intimacy coordination in High Maintenance to sitcom directing in Better Things, here’s an overview of the series’ professions embodied by the characters. 

  • High Maintenance 
    S04E02 “Trick”, HBO (2016 – 2020) 
    Intimacy Coordinator 
    The creators of High Maintenance hired an intimacy coordinator, Alicia Rodis, starting from season 2. She was able to advise actress Abigail Bengson on the filming of this episode, in addition to fulfilling her role in the intimate scenes. 
  • Entourage 
    S07E01 “Stunted”, HBO (2004 – 2011) 
    Ari Gold, the egotistical, rude, and colourful agent from Entourage, is inspired by Ari Emanuel, a real Hollywood talent agent. Actor Jeremy Piven won 3 Emmys for this role. 
  • Love 
    S01E01 “It Begins” et S01E03 “Tested”, Netflix (2016 – 2018) 
    Studio Teacher 
    Studio teachers are required to provide 3 hours of instruction per day to the young actors and actresses under their care. They must adapt to their schedules and maintain communication with both parents and production throughout the filming period. 
  • Extras 
    S01E01 “Ben Stiller”, BBC et HBO (2005 – 2007) 
    Extras boasts one of the most impressive guest lists on the small screen: Ben Stiller, Kate Winslet, David Bowie, Sir Patrick Stewart, Daniel Radcliffe, Orlando Bloom, Samuel L. Jackson, Robert De Niro, and even Dame Diana Rigg! 
  • Better Things 
    S05E06 “San Francisco” FX (2016 – 2022) 
    Sitcom director 
    Pamela Adlon wrote Better Things drawing inspiration from her own life as a mother and woman navigating the Hollywood industry. She also directed 44 out of the 52 episodes of the series. 
  • Reboot 
    S01E04 “Girlfriends”, Hulu (2022) 
    Shooting of a sitcom 
    In Reboot, creator Steve Levitan explores the studios’ obsession with recycling series, particularly sitcoms. The idea came to him when the return of Roseanne was announced (and subsequently cancelled). 
  • Nolly 
    S01E01, ITVX (2023) 
    Shooting of a soap opera 
    Nolly is based on the career of English actress Joan Noele Gordon, who starred in the soap opera Crossroads for 17 years before being abruptly fired in 1981. She returned to the series for 3 episodes in 1983. 
  • Monk 
    S02E12 “Mr. Monk and the T.V. star”, USA Network (2002 – 2009) 
    Shooting of a crime series 
    Very meta, Monk refers to its own highly controversial change of opening sequence in this episode, when a fan portrayed by Sarah Silverman expresses her hatred for that of Crime Lab: SF, a parody of CSI: Crime Scene Investigation
  • Irma Vep 
    S01E01 “La tête coupée”, HBO (2022) 
    Choreographer and Other Professions 
    Like Olivier Assayas’ 1996 film, the TV series version of Irma Vep is an excellent introduction to the world of production as it takes place on a film set. We discover numerous professions there! 
  • Split 
    S01E05 “One way to dyke land”, Slash.tv (2023) 
    Stunt Performer 
    Iris Brey, the series creator, aimed to have a technical team consisting mainly of women, contrary to the practices that are still the norm today. She also enlisted the intimacy coordinator Paloma Garcia Martens. 
  • Dix pour cent 
    S01E2 “Line et Françoise” et S01E06 “François”, France 2 (2015 – 2020) 
    The character of Andréa Martel, played by Camille Cottin, is inspired by the famous agent Élisabeth Tanner. She co-directs the agency Time Art, which she founded in 2015. Over the seasons, actors have rushed to appear in it in often sardonic roles. 

Creating this exhibition required the following professions: 


Exhibition Curatorship 
Exhibition Design 
Project Management 
Graphic Design 
Video Production and Editing 
Web Development 
Augmented Reality Development 
Editorial Assistance 


Technical Direction 
Stage Management 
Fabrication Workshop 
Decoration – Design 
Decoration – Installation 
Signage Installation 
Photography Direction 
Electrical Work 
General Technical Support 
Video Technology 
Sound Engineering 
Structural Engineering 
Visitor Services 
Outreach teams 

Supporting Roles: 

Human Resources