When Paris La Défense becomes a movie set!
Light, camera, action! On this first day of the 76th edition of the Cannes Film Festival, we thought it was important to set the scene. Because as you walk through the area, you may come across a film crew. And for good reason: Paris La Défense has been seducing directors for decades, for films, series and even commercials. From blockbusters to dramatic series, Paris La Défense is often on your screens!
Here is a brief overview of the achievements of the last 5 years:
The Black Baron
Canal + viewers probably recognized it in a few seconds. "Le Baron Noir" puts the territory in the spotlight! The series revolves around the political and judicial epic of Philippe Rickwaert (Kad Merad), a politician and member of the Socialist Party, driven by an irrepressible thirst for social revenge after having seen his political future collapse. The series opens with the various characters chatting on the terrace of the Meliá Paris La Défense hotel. Then, as the episodes progress, we can recognize the Pont de Neuilly, the boulevard Patrick Devedjian, the Eve tower, the First tower, or the Altiplano building (formerly Ile-de-France). The district of La Défense is visible on many occasions!
Emily In Paris
For three seasons now, "Emily In Paris" has taken us to a Paris filled with clichés, twists and turns and love stories. Emily Cooper, a young marketing executive in Chicago, is hired by a famous Parisian marketing agency to put her American perspective to work for its future clients. She embarks on a new life, juggling marketing, friends and romance. And since season 2, Paris La Défense is also part of the scenery, since Alfie's (Emily's boyfriend) apartment is located on the territory, and more specifically in the residence La Sirène !
Jusqu'ici tout va bien
Available since April 7, 2023 on Netflix, the series "Jusqu'ici tout va bien" was filmed in part at La Défense! A field journalist for several years, Fara is to become a presenter of "13/15", the news channel "24 Info". A fictitious channel located in the Belvedere building, at the foot of La Grande Arche. In the process, the young presenter comes to the aid of her brother who committed a hit-and-run after an accident and owes two million euros to a drug lord.
Ten days, pairs of celebrities, a team of investigators and a stalk across France... These are the ingredients gathered by Amazon Prime for "Celebrity Hunted"! The celebrities will do everything to disappear without a trace and try to escape from experts in cybersecurity, profiling and investigation. And to hope to find all the pairs, these experts have set up their HQ in La Défense, in the Carpe Diem tower! Aerial views and panoramic shots of the business district follow one another to present the environment of the tracking professionals. For 10 days, these "hunters" will track celebrities throughout France and they leave nothing to chance! A single objective for the celebrities: to reach a place of exfiltration to hope to win the competition.
The series "Zoo", broadcast on the American channel CBS and on TF1, stealthily shows the La Défense district. All over the world, animals become extremely aggressive towards humans for an unknown reason. An agent of the French secret service is even close to death in Botswana after an attack by lions. A few episodes later, Chloe returns to Paris to manage the crisis. You will be able to see the Cœur Défense building, the Carpe Diem tower, the Europe tower or even the Europlaza tower filmed from the esplanade, since it is one of these towers that houses the French offices of the fictitious company Reiden Global... But surprise, the interior of the firm's headquarters has nothing to do with the towers of the neighborhood, since no scene of this episode was shot in France. The hall of the building made of marbles and big columns is thus that of an American building!
Following the unjust conviction and suicide of their group leader, three cops from the PJ are tempted to cross the red line. A series full of suspense and twists and turns that took the characters to La Défense, and more specifically to an apartment on the 8th floor of a building in Courbevoie! These sequences required 3 days of intensive filming, from 9am to 9pm, and even surprised the inhabitants with the presence of many extras dressed as police officers and equipped with fake weapons.
La Belle Epoque
This dramatic comedy tells the story of a sixty-year-old man, played by Daniel Auteuil, who wants to relive the most memorable week of his life, the one when he met his great love. He will meet an entrepreneur, played by Guillaume Canet, who will help him realize his dream. A moving film that opens on the esplanade of La Défense, where we see the main actor taking a cab to go to a dinner. Several shots of the neighborhood and its buildings are also visible in the film, and sequences were even filmed directly in the building of the Public Development Establishment Paris La Defense and in one of the restaurants in the neighborhood!
John Wick 4
In theaters since March 22, 2023, the blockbuster "John Wick: Chapter 4" also passed through La Défense! In this latest opus, John Wick, played by Keanu Reeves, faces his deadliest adversaries and leads his fight on a global scale, from New York to Paris, passing through Osaka and Berlin. And it is once again the introductory scene that takes place on, or rather under, the territory. Indeed, the film opens with John Wick training in an underground lair in New York. But this lair is actually the basement of the La Défense slab, nicknamed "The Cathedral". This is the first time a feature film has been allowed to shoot on location, adding a unique touch to the film!