In order to get the role of d’Artagnan, François Civil lied. He told the production that, when he was younger, The Three Musketeers, by Alexandre Dumas, was his bedside book, even though he had never read it. “I tried to hide this story from Dimitri Rassam, the producer, as long as possible, but as I told it to Pio Marmaï [who plays Porthos] and he likes to put me in the sauce, as we said in France, he told her right away and I had to take it on,” the actor laughs.

He has obviously read the novel since. “I loved the character of Milady, who is a bit of a female James Bond in the 17th century, indicates the one who was nominated for the César for best actor in a supporting role for his performance in En corps, by Cédric Klapisch. I obviously liked d’Artagnan and the whole adventure. I was also delighted to read the screenplay, which necessarily adapts a lot of things, but which retains the spirit of the novel. »

Martin Bourboulon agrees with the plot by Alexandre de La Patellière and Matthieu Delaporte. “When the basics are solid, it’s not worth changing them for nothing,” he said. There was a balance to be found between the new ideas and what already belonged to the strength of the novel. »

The director of Eiffel still wanted to offer a new reading of the work. “I wanted us to feel free from all the adaptations done before and not to be held back from visually innovating – whether it’s for the costumes, the dramaturgy, the fight scenes -, to film the action a little differently. In order to realize his vision, Martin Bourboulon asked his actors to do their own stunts. “They were wonderful and it was thanks to their work that I was able to shoot the scenes in sequence. »

François Civil underlines that the training which preceded the filming was a memorable experience. “I was excited to be part of something very immersive and we were surrounded by such talented people, starting with Yannick Borel, who is an Olympic fencing champion. When you have a man like him who teaches you his sport, it forces humility and it makes you want to be up to it, ”admits the actor who also received lessons from equestrian stuntman Mario Luraschi.

The 33-year-old actor points out that the humor “united” the team, but that he and the three musketeers – Vincent Cassel (Athos), Pio Marmaï (Porthos) and Romain Duris (Aramis) – really understood the motto of their characters during fight scenes. “When it’s filmed in sequence, it means that we have to be able to count on each other. If there is one who fails, you have to start all over again, so, inevitably, you want to give the best for your comrades. The side “all for one, one for all”, we really lived it in our flesh. »

It is also a question of love in The Three Musketeers. Between King Louis XIII (Louis Garrel) and Queen Anne of Austria (Vicky Krieps). And between her and the Duke of Buckingham (Jacob Fortune-Lloyd). But especially between d’Artagnan and Constance Bonacieux (Lyna Khoudri), who serves the queen.

“On paper, my character was already quite clear, but I intervened a little in relation to the writing of the scenes between Constance and d’Artagnan, specifies François Civil. In the first versions of the screenplay, I found that he was so comfortable in flirting that he allowed himself too many witticisms. This is already his character trait when he faces the king and his fellow musketeers. I told myself that in love, there was perhaps another dimension to explore. Something a little more fragile, a little more sensitive, a little less forceful with Constance. »

D’Artagnan and its sequel, Milady, slated for December, were filmed at the same time, over a period of 150 days. Perhaps even more impressive is the fact that almost all of it was filmed in real locations rather than in the studio. Thus, we see different places in Paris, such as the Hôtel des Invalides and the Louvre Palace, but also the Fort National in Saint-Malo and the Château de Fontainebleau.

“It was wonderful for the tourist that I am, even in my own country, remembers François Civil who was filming 110 days. We also realized the cachet that it was going to give to our adaptation. Because mine nothing, I still saw a lot of film adaptations and some lack a bit of veracity. We wanted credibility throughout this project. »

Eva Green plays the villainous Milady – but is she really? His role is important in the first part and will certainly be more so in the next one that bears his name.

“We will learn several things, especially about the past of Milady and Athos, reveals Martin Bourboulon. It will be a slightly different film in tone and color. »

“I think there is more drama, adds François Civil. All the stakes are getting closer. There are things that are revealed. There is a kind of relationship that is established between d’Artagnan and Milady in this film and this bond of intimate enemies is woven more and more in the sequel. »