“Il giorno più bello,” Andrea Zalone’s directorial debut, is a lighthearted yet thought-provoking comedy, an exhilarating film that is also a source of inspiration for important realizations on human relationships. Among its protagonists, Valeria Bilello stands out on the screen and within the storyline, breezy and credible in the role of Serena, an unpredictable woman who steals and torments the hearts of the male protagonists.
Valeria is our July Cover Story: a “scientific” and enterprising actress, a wise and determined woman who makes her bread and butter out of the “non-ordinary,” and who “stays” even in the most difficult situations.
In a chat about her experience on set, between curiosity and sources of inspiration, anecdotes, and stories of wedding parties, Valeria told us about her modus operandi when it comes to playing characters who are far from her, and when it comes to making important life choices.
Waiting for answers always and only from herself.
Here we are, together again after a year: how have these months been? Is there a special atmosphere around, now that productions regularly go on?
It’s been so much better now, thanks to our “going back to normal” after lockdown, nights out with friends, concerts, and the sea, finally! All of this, alongside some new projects, has made me smile again.
“Il giorno più bello”, Andrea Zalone’s directorial debut and the Italian remake of the French film “C’est la vie,” is an exquisite comedy, light but never superficial, which makes the audience laugh as much as think: what has your experience been like on this set? Then, a classic question, did you already know the French version?
It was nice to spend a piece of summer (summer 2021, the finals and Italy’s victory in the European Football Championship included) in an unknown place in the middle of Piedmont’s countryside with a fun work team. I’d met Luca and Paolo but I’d never worked with them, their two real Genoa-born guys, apparently shy and secretive but with a warm heart. Sometimes, I like to work with people who are not only actors or actresses, they have other things to talk about when off the set, and they don’t have our same problems!
I didn’t know “C’est la vie” but I had seen “The Intouchables” and I really liked it. Olivier Nakache and Eric Toledano have a nice way to trigger laughter and make you think at the same time.
The movie is the tale of a crazy wedding party: what was the funniest scene to shoot?
The one of the wedding cake, for sure: we were covered in whipped cream, hair, earlobes, etc… But I guess there are many other fun scenes. The scene of the final choreography is hilarious in this film as well as in the original one.
While filming, did you also leave some space for improvising?
It’s something that I do often, improvising, but I never do it in comedies, where the script is scientific – if you change a line, the risk is that the following line of your colleague is not funny anymore.
Your character, Serena, is a smart woman, full of energy, which she releases at the risk and peril of those who surround her: what kind of relationship did you have with this character? What piece of life advice would you give her, if she was your friend?
[Laughs] I wish I had Serena as a friend, I would have different things to talk about on the phone, but unfortunately, I often find myself talking with girlfriends about what men want or do not want to change in their relationship or in their life, women who wait for a lot of answers by men. Serena is the opposite, she messes around, but at least she’s responsible for everything.
About Serena, they say that “she cares too much about everyone, so she doesn’t really care about anyone”. Do you think that’s true? Do you believe that if you love too many people you can’t really love all of them sincerely, or that if you have too many passions, none of those can really be deep?
I think it’s not easy to love more people at the same time, I don’t even know if it’s possible. But I don’t feel like judging, we all live so many complicated moments and one of these can absolutely host a long hesitation, but it’s better to hesitate and upset your life than regret things later on, am I right? What matters, I think, is honesty, if everyone is aware of everything, then there are no victims in love, but only adults going through phases and freely choosing if they want to stay or leave.