The young Kurd Bilal has crossed Europe as an illegal alien in hopes of reaching his girlfriend, who has emigrated with her family to England. He arrives in Calais, in the North of France, where he meets other illegal aliens. Bilal organizes an attempt to cross the border by hiding inside a truck but he is blocked by the police. Determined not to give up, he realizes that his only chance is to swim across the Channel. He starts training at the municipal swimming pool, where he meets Simon, a middle-aged swim coach who is having marital problems.
“I was immediately attracted by the subject of Welcome, which is dedicated to people fleeing from their countries of origin and who are determined to reach that El Dorado which England appears to be in their eyes. After an improbable voyage they are blocked in Calais – frustrated, mistreated and humiliated – just a few kilometers from the English coast, which they can even see in the distance. During a harsh winter, we followed the volunteers around for days, coming into contact with the hellish life of refugees.”
Philippe Lioret (Paris, France, 1955) entered the world of cinema by working as a sound technician for directors such as Robert Altman and Michel Deville. In 1994, he debuted as a director with Tombés du ciel. Three years later he shot the comedy Tenue correcte exigée, followed in 2001 by Mademoiselle, starring Sandrine Bonnaire. In 2004 his film L’èquipier received three nominations for César awards. After two shorts in the collective film Tête de gondole (2005), he made Je vais bien, ne t’en fais pas, for which the actors Mélanie Laurent and Kad Mérad each received a César.
Tombés du ciel (1994), 3000 scénarios contre un virus (ep. La Sirène, TV, 1994), Tenue correcte exigée (1997), Pas d’histoires! 12 regards sur le racisme au quotidien (ep. Pas d’histoire, 2001), Mademoiselle (2001), L’équipier (2004), Tête de gondole (ep. Tue l’amour, ep. Vache qui rit, 2005 ), Je vais bien, ne t’en fais pas (2006), Welcome (2009).
soggetto, sceneggiatura/story, screenplay
Philippe Lioret, Emmanuel Courcol, Olivier Adam
Nicola Piovani, Wojciech Kilar, Armand Amar
Pierre Mertens, Laurent Quaglio, Eric Tisserand
interpreti e personaggi/cast and characters
Vincent Lindon (Simon), Firat Ayverdi (Bilal), Audrey Dana (Marion), Derya Ayverdi (Mina), Thierry Godard (Bruno), Selim Akgul (Zoran), Firat Celik (Koban), Murat Subasi (Mirko)